MPs call for technology company Arm to be launched in the UK
Politicians want foreign owner of Arm Holdings to take company to London Stock Exchange to return £30bn management to Britain
Backlash: Masayoshi Son is the head of SoftBank
Politicians are calling on the foreign owner of tech giant Arm Holdings to float the company on the London Stock Exchange to return management of the £30billion business to Britain.
Japanese multinational SoftBank – chaired by billionaire Masayoshi Son – bought the British chip designer five years ago.
It has been locked in protracted talks to sell Arm to US semiconductor giant Nvidia, but the deal now looks set to fall apart. Nvidia has indicated that it does not expect negotiations to end following a backlash from regulators around the world.
In November, the British government ordered a full investigation into the merger on national security grounds, adding to doubts over the sale.
Last week, MPs spoke out asking Arm to stay in Britain on national security grounds.
There is resistance within SoftBank and Arm itself to a public listing and it is understood this is seen as a plan B should the Nvidia deal fall through.
Arm employs around 3,000 people in Cambridge. If listed in London, it would be one of the largest companies in the FTSE100 index.
However, SoftBank may instead seek to float the pioneering and strategically important company in New York.
Anthony Browne, Conservative MP for Cambridge South, said: “Arm is a leading UK technology company of national strategic importance and a major local employer.
“If it does go public, it should do so in London rather than New York or elsewhere to ensure that its interests and those of its investors are aligned with our national interest.
“Ownership matters – especially for such strategically important companies,” he added.
Damian Green, Conservative MP for Ashford, said: ‘Arm Holdings is a world-renowned British company that should stay British.’ I really hope if it gets listed anywhere it makes it to London.
The anticipated sale comes at a time when electronics makers are struggling due to microchip shortages.
SoftBank has been approached for comment.