19. Juni 2018, 14:39 Uhr | Frank Riemenschneider
Qualcomms Headquarter in San Diego, California.
The future of Qualcomm's proposed acquisition of NXP Semiconductors remains unclear. Referring to three persons close to the talks, news agency Reuters said that the antitrust authorities had not approved the deal, although the Hong Kong-based newspaper "South China Morning Post" reported otherwise.
Sources said they were not aware of Chinese approval and that the business would indeed become more complicated after China announced that it would take retaliatory measures against new US tariffs on Chinese imports worth 50 billion dollars. Qualcomm said on June 15 that it had also extended its cash offer to acquire NXP Semiconductors by one week, and that the offer is now due to expire on June 22 as it continues to await China's approval of the transaction.
China remains the final obstacle to the planned acquisition, which was first agreed in October 2016. The transaction has received the approval of eight of the nine global regulatory authorities.
Qualcomm has been trying to get the deal through in recent weeks, but the problem has been made worse by a deterioration in relations between China and the US. Apart from the tensions in the US, Chinese regulators are also concerned about the potential impact of the transaction on Chinese companies operating in the semiconductor market.
The situation had eased slightly in the meantime after the two countries had reached an agreement to resume ZTE's business activities after a crippling US import ban. Qualcomm was reportedly "cautiously optimistic" that China would agree to the deal after ZTE received a postponement from the US.
Last night, however, the US Senate decided by a large majority to maintain the sanctions against ZTE, which include a ban on the supply of Qualcomm chips. President Trump's agreement on the ZTE case is therefore more than ever in jeopardy, and a boycott of the telecommunications company Huawei has also been decided. Details about the Senate decision can be found in this article.