U.S. antitrust body sues to block Nvidia's $40 billion takeover of Arm

Asian Tech Press (Dec 3) -- The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced Thursday that it sued on antitrust grounds to block Nvidia's planned $40 billion takeover of British chip designer Arm Ltd. from Japan's SoftBank Group.

Back in September 2020, U.S. chipmaker Nvidia Corp. announced its plan to acquire Arm. Since the plan was unveiled, it has been caught in a whirlwind of opposition, scrutiny and security concerns.

"Tomorrow's technologies depend on preserving today's competitive, cutting-edge chip markets. This proposed deal would distort Arm's incentives in chip markets and allow the combined firm to unfairly undermine Nvidia's rivals," said FTC Bureau of Competition Director Holly Vedova.

In addition, the FTC is concerned that Nvidia may obtain sensitive information from Arm's licensees that already compete with Nvidia, and may also prohibit Arm from developing new products and designs that conflict with Nvidia's own interests.

The lawsuit is another regulatory blow to Nvidia's acquisition of Arm, as the U.K. government and the European Commission have begun in-depth antitrust investigations into the deal.

The lawsuit filed by the FTC will keep Nvidia from completing its acquisition of Arm for at least some time. According to the announcement, the FTC's administrative trial will begin on August 9, 2022.

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