The future of Qualcomm’s proposed deal to acquire NXP Semiconductors remains unclear after sources close to the deal dismissed reports Chinese regulators had approved the tie-up.
Citing three people close to the talks, Reuters said antitrust regulators had not given the go-ahead to the deal, despite Hong Kong-based South China Morning Post reporting otherwise.
Sources said they were not aware of any Chinese approval and the deal would in fact be further complicated after China announced it would retaliate against new US tariffs on $50 billion-worth of Chinese imports.
Qualcomm said on 15 June it had also extended its cash tender offer to acquire NXP Semiconductors by a week, with the offer now scheduled to expire on 22 June, as it continues to wait for Chinese approval for the deal.
China remains the final roadblock to the proposed acquisition, which was first agreed in October 2016. The deal has secured approval from eight of the nine global regulators.
Qualcomm attempted to push through the deal in recent weeks, but the issue was complicated by a deterioration in relations between China and the US.
The situation was eased slightly after the two countries struck a deal to put ZTE back in business following a crippling US import ban. Qualcomm was reportedly “cautiously optimistic” China would approve the deal after ZTE got a reprieve from the US.
Aside from US tensions, Chinese regulators are also concerned about the impact the deal could have on Chinese companies operating in the semiconductor market.