Broadcom confirms anti-trust probe, professes zero worries

Says probe doesn't impact wireless lines, leaving about a gazillion other products in play

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Broadcom has confirmed it's under investigation by the United States' Federal Trade Commission (FTC) over antitrust issues, but doesn't believe that's going to affect its business.

News of the investigation broke when the usual “people familiar with the matter” told the Wall Street Journal (probably paywalled) the FTC was looking into the chip giant's customer negotiations.

The report claimed some Broadcom customers have been required to buy a proportion of its production items, rather than a fixed number of devices.

Broadcom told Reuters and Bloomberg the investigation is “immaterial” to its business and doesn't involve its wireless operations.

That leaves only its data centre, storage, broadband, embedded, Ethernet, PCIe, fibre, LEDs, display, or other devices to choose from.

That seems to hint that Broadcom isn't worried about the FTC sticking an oar into its troubled US$100 billion-plus hostile takeover of Qualcomm.

Qualcomm has repeatedly rebuffed Broadcom's advances. Broadcom's November offer was stiff-armed by the target, and its attempt to nominate a new Qualcommm board flopped.

A statement about the takeover on Tuesday made it clear the battle isn't over. Lamenting that Qualcomm “elected to remain a standalone company”, Broadcom says it “remains very confident that the regulatory requirements necessary to complete a combination will be met in a timely manner”. ®


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