UK To Deeply Scrutinize Broadcom-Vmware Deal

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  • On March 29, Britain's Competition and Markets Authority referred to the anticipated takeover of Vmware, Inc (NYSE: VMW) by Broadcom Inc (NASDAQ: AVGO) for an in-depth investigation for concerns over the substantial lessening of competition within the U.K. markets.

  • The Phase 2 investigation has a statutory deadline of September 12, 2023.

  • On March 22, 2023, Broadcom informed the CMA that it would not offer any undertakings to the CMA in the five days after it published its concerns.

  • Last December, the European Commission launched an in-depth investigation to assess, under the EU Merger Regulation, the proposed acquisition.

  • The Commission's preliminary investigation indicated restricted competition in the supply of NICs, FC HBAs, and storage adapters leading to higher prices, lower quality, and less innovation for business customers and consumers.

  • The watchdog will also examine whether Broadcom may hinder the development of SmartNICs by other providers.

  • Another examination point is whether Broadcom may start bundling VMware's virtualization software with its software reducing choice and potentially foreclosing rival software providers.

  • The Commission now has until May 11, 2023, to decide.

  • The U.S. Federal Trade Commission sought information about the deal from the companies.

  • The deal would further Broadcom's push into software, nearly tripling the size of the company's software division.

  • Broadcom shares gained 13% YTD versus the broader index SPDR S&P 500 (NYSE: SPY), which gained 5%.

  • Price Action: AVGO shares traded higher by 0.10% at $625.34 on the last check Wednesday.

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