As early as September 2020 we learned for the first time that Nvidia would take over the British chip designer ARM for a cool 40 billion US dollars. ARM is a pretty big player when it comes to chips, and it licenses blueprints to all sorts of other companies like Apple, Samsung, and Qualcomm. It’s a very important company in the UK tech scene.
At the time, Nvidia announced plans to expand ARM’s Cambridge headquarters into a new AI-focused research and development location. AI appeared to be a driving part of Nvidia’s goals upon acquisition, and the company expected the deal to be closed within 18 months.
That seems unlikely as the UK has just launched a six-month investigation into Nvidia’s acquisition of ARM. Reuters reports that the UK is starting the investigation because of ARM’s position in the industry, citing national security and wider supply chain as potential issues.
The UK isn’t the first government to scrutinize sales. The European Commission opened a formal investigation earlier this year as it was also concerned about ARM’s prominent position in the industry.
With ARM chips being used by so many companies, including Nvidia’s competitors, this is a real problem for many. So it’s no wonder that government agencies continue to get involved.
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While Nvidia has pledged to maintain ARM’s neutrality, the share price has risen since the deal. It also showed pretty decent ray tracing and DLSS using ARM-based silicon, so we may just have to wait and see.
If you want a much deeper dive into ARM, its relationship with Nvidia to date, and the significance of this acquisition, we have a detailed report for you.
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