Nvidia’s Arm Bid Sparks Weekly U.K. Talks With FTC
(Bloomberg) -- The U.K.’s top antitrust regulator says his agency discusses Nvidia Corp.’s controversial bid for Arm Ltd. with his U.S. counterpart Lina Khan’s Federal Trade Commission “literally every week” in a sign of the intense scrutiny facing the blockbuster chip deal.
Competition and Markets Authority Chief Executive Officer Andrea Coscelli says the frequency of the conversations on the deal -- which is at risk on numerous regulatory fronts -- underscores his cooperation with Khan and her team as well as with the European Commission’s antitrust arm, led by Margrethe Vestager.
“There is a lot of collaboration going on, probably more than people realize from the outside on individual cases,” Coscelli said in an interview with Bloomberg News.
A spokesperson for the FTC declined to comment.
Rivals and chip customers have criticized the chip deal, valued at $40 billion when it was announced more than a year ago. Qualcomm Inc. and Alphabet Inc.’s Google have voiced complaints that Nvidia’s control of Arm’s licenses for essential chip technology could threaten the U.K.-based chip designer’s role as a neutral partner often compared to the Switzerland of the semiconductor industry.
While the tie-up has sparked concerns among regulators across the world, the CMA was first off the blocks, warning in August that the deal could allow Nvidia to cut off its rivals’ access to Arm’s ubiquitous and power-efficient designs used in technology ranging from data centers to smartphones. Aside from an in-depth competition probe, the deal also faces a U.K. national security review.
Coscelli was speaking ahead of the Digital Competition Enforcers Summit, hosted by the CMA in London Nov. 29-30. The event is slated as the first time global regulators will have formally met to talk about how to tackle the dominance of Big Tech.
Khan and the heads of other G-7 competition regulators are expected to attend either in person or virtually, as well as the European Commission, South Africa, South Korea and India as guests.
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