Broadcom may acquire Qualcomm amid existential legal battle with Apple
04 November, 2017, 00:23 | Author: Pamela Mathis
Qualcomm is not aware of the details of Broadcom's bid, and it is far from certain whether it will entertain this deal, the sources said. The news, reported by Bloomberg today, would value Qualcomm shares at around $70, and investors immediately responded enthusiastically by sending Qualcomm stock up almost 14 percent in what Bloomberg says is the largest stock movement for the company in almost a decade.
A Qualcomm representative declined comment.
No final decisions have been made and there is no guarantee a deal will go ahead. Qualcomm's stock is down 16 percent this year, excluding the jump prompted by the Broadcom news today, and it suffered a staggering 90 percent drop in profit in its fourth quarter earnings released earlier this week. Broadcom's stock also rose on the report, adding $14.13 or 5.45% to $273.63.
Bloomberg broke the news Friday morning, saying people familiar with the matter are talking to advisers about bidding $70 a share, for a total of more than $100 billion, for Qualcomm.
Five years ago, when smartphone demand was soaring, Qualcomm briefly overtook Intel in market value.
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Broadcom, meanwhile, announced it would return its corporate headquarters to the USA, in San Jose.
The saga kicked off almost a year ago, in January 2017, when Apple first filed a lawsuit against Qualcomm for allegedly abusing its market position to extract more money from hardware manufacturers.
Qualcomm is now trying to buy Netherlands-based NXP Semiconductors NV for about $40 billion.
At issue between Qualcomm and Apple are licensing fees the chipmaker charges for patents that cover the basics of how mobile phone systems work. The deal is facing regulatory examination in Europe and opposition from some shareholders including activist hedge fund firm Elliott Management Corp., which has argued the offer undervalues NXP.
Antitrust officials, who also would have to approve a Broadcom-Qualcomm deal, are still considering Qualcomm's purchase of NXP.
A tie-up between the two chipmakers would be the latest in the semiconductor industry that has been rapidly consolidating as companies try to capture a big share of the fast-growing market for connected devices and connected cars.
Qualcomm may soon be extended a way out courtesy of Broadcom, which itself supplies Apple with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth combo chips.
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