Softbank, the Japanese owner of the British CPU developer ARM, apparently wants to sell the division, and the graphic chip designer Nvidia is said to have expressed their interest in taking over the company. If it happens, then it would be the biggest deal in the chip area to date.
For many manufacturers worldwide, including Intel and AMD, ARM is an enormously important company because the British chip maker hold the self-developed ARM license, which is used in billions of chips in hundreds of designs. ARM designs CPU cores itself, these range from Cortex-M0+ for microcontrollers to Cortex-A78 for smartphones. Most recently, Apple had also announced its return to the ARM architecture for its Macs.
Softbank acquired ARM for $32 billion in the summer of 2016, the purchase price is almost 50 percent above ARM’s market value. Apple was also interested in making an offer but later backed off.
Now, Nvidia has signaled interest in an ARM takeover, as Bloomberg reports. A deal is still a long way off.
If there be a takeover, then it would be the biggest deal in the chip area to date. After all, not only have the general ratings for companies in the chip industry multiplied in recent years, interest in ARM, in particular, has increased — above all due to the still booming smartphone sector.
Why Softbank wants to get rid of the currently booming chip manufacturer ARM is unclear. The Japanese company had previously sold shares in Alibaba and T-Mobile USA. Incidentally, until a few years ago, Softbank held a billion-dollar stake in Nvidia. At the beginning of 2019, however, it was said that the group had now sold all of the shares in Nvidia.