White House Blocks Broadcom's Bid for Qualcomm, Ending Tense Standoff

The White House snubbed out Broadcom's proposed $117 billion bid for Qualcomm, issuing an statement that orders Broadcom to cease its hostile takeover and disqualifies all the directors that Broadcom nominated to Qualcomm's board.

The statement released by the White House on Monday ends a tense standoff between the two companies, stocked and fanned by dueling press releases and open letters. The two generals were Hock Tan, Broadcom's chief executive, and Paul Jacobs, who recently stepped down as Qualcomm's chairman into a reduced board role.

The White House's order disqualified the deal on the ground that it would endanger U.S. national security. The statement mirrored a letter that the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, or CFIUS, sent to both companies last week after it announced that it would investigate the deal.

The agency expressed concern that Broadcom would cut Qualcomm's research and development budget to boost short-term profits, eroding American leadership in 5G wireless technology as a result. Broadcom vowed not to do that, and the company sped up its plan to redomicile in the U.S. from Singapore. It would relocate by April, not May.

The vows obviously did not sway the White House. "The proposed takeover of Qualcomm by the Purchaser [Broadcom] is prohibited, and any substantially equivalent merger, acquisition, or takeover, whether effected directly or indirectly, is also prohibited," the statement signed by President Donald Trump reads.

The full statement from the White House can be read here.

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