Qualcomm CEO Cristiano Amon has confirmed that the company is interested in acquiring the British chip marker Arm by forming a consortium.
Arm is one of the greatest players in the semiconductor industry. And it has been through the wringer in recent months. After SoftBank failed to complete its $40 billion deal with Nvidia, the future of Arm is still in ambiguity. But Qualcomm seems to be willing to acquire Arm to expand its dominance in the market.
Qualcomm CEO Cristiano Amon told Financial Times they’re interested in forming a consortium and acquiring Arm. “We’re an interested party in investing,” Amon said. “It’s a very important asset and it’s an asset which is going to be essential to the development of our industry.”
Amon continued, “You’d need to have many companies participating so they have a net effect that Arm is independent.”
Of course, acquiring Arm won’t be an easy and cheap deal for Qualcomm, and SoftBank doesn’t want to lose a great chip maker company for less than its actual value. Specifically when the global chip shortage is badly affecting industries and will probably last until 2024. Arm now sells its chips to some big companies, including Huawei, MediaTek, Apple, Google, and Samsung.
Acquiring Arm could be a trump card for Qualcomm
It’s still unclear if Qualcomm has a detailed roadmap to buying Arm. But if they’re serious with their offer, SoftBank would definitely listen to them because it needs cash to make up for its recent losses.
However, Qualcomm is not the first company after Nvidia that offers a bid to buy Arm . The future of Arm is now more ambiguous than ever, but many other chip makers like to have a piece of it. Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger has previously suggested that Arm customers could get together and buy the company.
Qualcomm used to be a strong opponent of selling Arms to Nvidia. The company claimed Arm’s current position is because of its partners’ collective investment. “Arm has won everywhere because of the collective investment of the entire ecosystem, from companies like Apple and Qualcomm and many others, and that’s because it was an independent, open architecture that everybody could invest in,” Amon said.