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Broadcom raises Qualcomm bid to whopping US$121 billion

The huge price tag would make the transaction the largest in the history of the tech sector


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Broadcom is the product of a $37 billion tie up two years ago between two chip makers. PHOTO: Gareth Halfacree/Flickr

SAN JOSE, Calif.—Broadcom boosted its bid for Qualcomm to more than US$121 billion in cash and stock Feb. 5 in what would be the largest tech deal in history.

Broadcom Ltd. said that its “best and final offer” of $82 per Qualcomm share includes $60 in cash and the rest in Broadcom shares.

Qualcomm, which makes the omnipresent Snapdragon chips used in smartphones and tablets, said Monday that it has received the revised bid and that its board, along with financial and legal advisers, will review the offer.

Qualcomm Inc. previously said that a $103 billion unsolicited acquisition offer undervalued the San Diego company. It criticized the people that Broadcom and Silver Lake Partners had wanted to put on its board, saying that they were conflicted and had no skills or expertise to offer.

Qualcomm is already the No. 3 global chip supplier, according to research firm Gartner, behind Intel and Samsung. A combination with Broadcom would not change that.

Broadcom is the product of a $37 billion tie up two years ago between Avago, a Singapore company that was once part of a former unit of pioneering PC maker Hewlett-Packard, and Broadcom, another company with origins in Southern California that made chips.

Broadcom is hungry to grow and it’s moving its home address to Delaware to make that happen. The company’s corporate headquarters in San Jose, California, but its home address is in Singapore.

Qualcomm is in the middle of negotiating a $38.1 billion deal to buy NXP Semiconductors, but that’s come under regulatory scrutiny in Europe. Broadcom said Monday that its revised takeover offer is premised on either Qualcomm acquiring NXP or the transaction being terminated. It also doesn’t want Qualcomm to delay or adjourn its annual meeting past March 6.

Qualcomm’s stock dropped 2 per cent in premarket trading, while shares of Broadcom rose slightly.


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