Qualcomm is in the middle of closing out a deal to purchase NXP Semiconductors. The companies announced the deal in October of 2016, and have not yet closed it out. It’s been under some tight scrutiny in the European Union due to the fact that Qualcomm is essentially purchasing a competitor. And now, regulators are saying that Qualcomm has not offered any concessions to make the deal for NXP go smoothly. Typically companies have to offer up concessions to buy their competitor, in order for regulators to approve of the deal. AT&T had to do something similar when it was purchasing DIRECTV. Now, since Qualcomm has not made any concessions – which it had until June 1st to do so – it could be looking at a pretty lengthy investigation before the deal is approved.
The competition authority division of the EU is in the middle of a preliminary review of the deal, which will end on June 9th. There are basically two ways this review could end up, next week. The authority could clear the deal unconditionally, or it could decide to open an investigation into the deal, and that investigation could last around four months. Qualcomm could attempt to convince the regulators in the EU that the deal is not anti-competitive, during the investigation. Which is likely something that they will do. If that doesn’t work, Qualcomm will be forced to offer concessions, or abort the deal. Competitors of Qualcomm have said that it wants the company to agree to fair licensing practices, which is something Qualcomm is already in court for, with Apple.
While Qualcomm is a big mobile processor provider, it does have its hands in other areas. Like modems and such. NXP, by contrast, is available in a lot of key cards for buildings and public transport. Rivals have been asking for the ability to still use NXP’s products after the acquisition goes through. Now at this point, it’s still unclear whether the acquisition will actually go through or not, seeing as Qualcomm isn’t making it easy on the competition authority, who is reviewing the deal between the two semiconductor companies – this is the largest deal in the semiconductor industry, ever.