Graphics hardware and AI giant Nvidia has confirmed its long-rumored acquisition of UK-based chip design firm Arm from SoftBank during a $40 billion transaction slated to be completed over subsequent 18 months.The deal will see Nvidia further develop its AI computing platform to succeed in more devices and applications, while also radically reshaping the worldwide semiconductor industry.
Jenson Huang, the company’s CEO, noted:
Uniting NVIDIA’s AI computing capabilities with the vast ecosystem of Arm’s CPU, we can advance computing from the cloud, smartphones, PCs, self-driving cars and robotics, to edge IoT, and expand AI computing to every corner of the globe. For Arm’s ecosystem, the combination will turbocharge Arm’s R&D capacity and expand its IP portfolio with NVIDIA’s world-leading GPU and AI technology.
Arm, which designs processors for a good range of consumer products including phones and laptops, will retain its headquarters in Cambridge, but also add on an AI-focused R&D center there. The goal is to not only develop chips for the aforementioned applications, but also to permit Nvidia to “build a state-of-the-art AI supercomputer, powered by Arm CPUs.”
The deal will see Nvidia pay $12 billion in cash and $21.5 billion in sales. SoftBank and its $100 billion Vision Fund will get a stake of between 6.7% and 8.1% in Nvidia.