Arm chief takes on Nvidia deal critics - Mobile World Live

Arm chief takes on Nvidia deal critics

05 JUL 2021

Arm CEO Simon Segars hit out at claims an acquisition by Nvidia would be detrimental to the company and the UK tech sector, stating the scale of investment needed to lead in the AI era discounted other options.

In a blog post on Arm’s website the executive said he wanted to address “ill-informed speculation out there about what the future of Arm with Nvidia will look like”, pointing to comments from opponents on a range of issues and claims an IPO was a better way to drive investment.

Nvidia’s $40 billion acquisition from Arm’s current owner SoftBank Group was announced in 2020, but since attracted criticism by UK authorities on the perceived effect on the nation and been slammed by others on competition grounds.

Segars noted under SoftBank there had been heavy investment in new chip technologies allowing it to play in the 5G and cloud computing markets. However, to lead in AI he added Arm needed to “expand our scope, expand our business and invest in new technologies”.

“We contemplated an IPO but determined that the pressure to deliver short-term revenue growth and profitability would suffocate our ability to invest, expand, move fast and innovate,” he noted. “Combining with Nvidia will give us the scale, resources and agility needed to maximise the opportunities ahead.”

The executive added Nvidia already had a leadership position in AI, making it the ideal company to tie its future to.

On the question of its presence in the UK, Segars claimed the new owners would “not siphon investment away” from the country, pointing to plans to expand its headquarters in Cambridge and build a local AI research facility.

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Chris Donkin

Chris joined the Mobile World Live team in November 2016 having previously worked at a number of UK media outlets including Trinity Mirror, The Press Association and UK telecoms publication Mobile News. After spending 10 years in journalism, he moved...

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