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Will the Qualcomm-NXP Deal Be Free at Last?

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Qualcomm’s acquisition of NXP could go through next week

According to the Wall Street Journal, Qualcomm (QCOM) is likely to complete its long-pending $39 billion acquisition of Dutch company NXP Semiconductors by next week, now that EU (European Union) antitrust regulators are expected to give the acquisition a green light.

In June 2017, the EU expressed concerns about the implications of the deal. Those concerns included reduced choices, increased prices, and less renovation. Margrethe Vestager, the EU antitrust commissioner, explained in June that “As semiconductors are used in practically every electronic device, we are dependent on them.”

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Qualcomm has been beset by conflict

Meanwhile, Qualcomm’s major competitor, Broadcom (AVGO), is pushing hard to acquire the former. The Qualcomm-NXP deal could help Qualcomm fight back against Broadcom. If Qualcomm acquires NXP, Broadcom may find it difficult to acquire Qualcomm, as the deal could face a greater scrutiny from the antitrust regulators.

But Qualcomm has been entangled in a number of legal battles recently. These include the long-term battle with one of its biggest customers, Apple (AAPL), over pricing policies. The chip maker has also seen a number of antitrust fines in recent years.

Meanwhile, Qualcomm recently launched its Snapdragon 845 processor, which includes AI (artificial intelligence) capacities. Qualcomm shares have fallen 2.2% in the past 12 months.

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