Well, well. Reports emerged last week about SoftBank thinking about selling ARM Holdings, the company whose designs power much of the mobile world.
There talk was accompanied by how ARM had increased licensing fees by up to four times.
While not much information was available at that time, the fog has cleared a bit via this Bloomberg report that suggests that NVIDIA is one of the companies that have approached SoftBank for a deal for acquiring the company.
Yes, the graphics card giant.
SoftBank paid a whopping $32 billion for ARM back in 2016, and is now looking to sell up to $41 billion in assets through either an IPO or a direct sale. The Japanese multinational firm has been slowly offloading the assets it owns from Alibaba and T-Mobile, so this move is not surprising.
What is surprising is this approach from NVIDIA.
If this deal transpires, the acquisition will mean that the graphics processing unit maker will gain access to one of the largest suppliers of semiconductor designs in the world.
ARM solutions power everything from feature and smart phones to tablets and now even PCs.
The report further states that the current cash position that NVIDIA enjoys puts it in a comfortable place to raise more debt for the acquisition, if it so wishes. Not a bad place to be in, as the GPU giant has over the past decade branched out into a number of areas, including cloud and artificial intelligence.
That said, it’s not an easy bridge to cross.
As another article makes a case, this potential sale is on the unlikely end of the spectrum, as NVIDIA competes with Intel and other chip makers. Acquiring ARM will invite regulatory trouble and concerns from the competition.
Guess we’ll have to see how this ends up.