UK intervenes in Nvidia Arm deal over national security concerns

UK intervenes in Nvidia Arm deal over national security concerns

Nvidia's $40 billion acquisition of chip maker Arm is under fresh scrutiny from the UK government.

The Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport posted a public interest intervention notice (PIIN) on its website, saying that it believes that this deal might constitute a national security risk. The Secretary of State has said that this is based on "advice received from officials across the investment security community" and has asked the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) to look into the matter and issue a report by midnight on July 30th, 2021.

In September, Nvidia announced that it intended to buy Arm for a cool $40 billion, with the CMA announcing a few months later that it was investigating the deal. Meanwhile, companies including Google, Microsoft and Qualcomm have expressed their concerns about the acquisition to US antitrust regulators.

Only recently, Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang said he was "very confident" that the deal would be going through in 2022.

"I’m very confident that the regulators will see the wisdom of the transaction," he said.

"It will provide a surge of innovation. It will create new options for the marketplace. It will allow Arm to be expanded into markets that otherwise are difficult for them to reach themselves. Like many of the partnerships I announced, those are all things bringing AI to the ARM ecosystem, bringing Nvidia’s accelerated computing platform to the ARM ecosystem — it’s something only we and a bunch of computing companies working together can do. The regulators will see the wisdom of it, and our discussions with them are as expected and constructive. I’m confident that we’ll still get the deal done in 2022, which is when we expected it in the first place, about 18 months."

PCGamesInsider Contributing Editor

Alex Calvin is a freelance journalist who writes about the business of games. He started out at UK trade paper MCV in 2013 and left as deputy editor over three years later. In June 2017, he joined Steel Media as the editor for new site In October 2019 he left this full-time position at the company but still contributes to the site on a daily basis. He has also written for, VGC, Games London, The Observer/Guardian and Esquire UK.