- SoftBank is positioning itself in the IoT sector with the acquisition of the British chip maker ARM Holdings for 28.5 billion euros.
- It is the biggest financial operation in history within British Tech.
- The Japanese group wants to double the workforce of ARM Holdings in the United Kingdom.
- This acquisition comes after a spring marked by several disposals of SoftBank’s assets, notably with Alibaba and Supercell.
The Japanese group SoftBank, specialized in Internet services, has just finalized the acquisition of the British giant ARM Holdings electronic chips for a record 24 billion pounds, or 28.5 billion euros. According to TechCrunch, this is the biggest financial operation in history within British Tech. The realization of this takeover was only a matter of time since the approval of the shareholders of ARM gathered in a general meeting last week and the green light of the justice issued on Friday, September 3.
The acquisition of Britain’s ARM Holdings will allow SoftBank to begin its shift in the Internet of Things. Until now, SoftBank’s development has been based on fixed and mobile Internet services. However, the arrival of connected objects has upset the balance of the ecosystem, which has pushed SoftBank to embark on the path of IoT. By acquiring ARM Holdings, the Masayoshi Son firm is banking on strong demand for microchips intended to be integrated into a wide range of connected objects. The British group supplies components to Apple in particular for the manufacture of iPhones. SoftBank has already expressed the wish to double the workforce of the British company in the United Kingdom.
$ 16.5 billion raised in June
For several months, SoftBank had been preparing the ground for a major acquisition by increasing asset disposals. As early as June, the Japanese group had announced its intention to sell $ 7.9 billion of shares it holds in Alibaba. At the same time, SoftBank sold Supercell, the publisher of Clash of Clans, for $ 8.6 billion to Tencent, allowing the Japanese group to rebalance its accounts.
Despite the takeover of ARM Holdings, SoftBank will have to face several first-rate competitors, such as STMicroelectronics which also specializes in the production of semiconductors. However, the Franco-Italian group is currently at an impasse with the announcement of the elimination of 1,400 jobs around the world at the start of the year and a governance of the company that is not unanimous among employees.
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