Broadcom 'to unveil challenge to Qualcomm's board'

NEW YORK • Chipmaker Broadcom reportedly took its first formal step yesterday towards a hostile bid to take over Qualcomm, unveiling nominees whom Qualcomm shareholders can vote on to replace the US semiconductor company's board of directors, according to people familiar with the matter.

Broadcom's move comes after Qualcomm rejected its US$103 billion (S$139 billion) cash-and-stock bid last month.

Qualcomm shareholders who want the company to engage in sale talks will be able to vote on Broadcom's board director slate on March 6.

Broadcom has lined up nine men and two women as board director nominees, many of them with much experience in the technology sector, the sources said on Sunday.

Private equity firm Silver Lake, an investor in Broadcom, has helped with the effort to recruit the nominees, the sources added.

Broadcom will not be unveiling any new offer for Qualcomm, the sources said. It has been considering an improved bid, and will likely present it by March, based on the reception its board director slate receives from Qualcomm shareholders, the sources added.

Reuters reported last month that Broadcom was considering raising its offer by offering more of its own stock.

The sources asked not to be identified because the deliberations are confidential. Broadcom and Qualcomm declined to comment.

The board director slate that Broadcom puts forward will be heavily scrutinised, because its nominees will not just be asked to put Qualcomm up for sale, but will also have to oversee the company until a deal with Broadcom closes.

Broadcom has said regulators may take a year to approve an acquisition of Qualcomm, while Qualcomm has countered that the regulatory review process globally could last much longer and is fraught with risks.

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 05, 2017, with the headline 'Broadcom 'to unveil challenge to Qualcomm's board''. Print Edition | Subscribe