Cfius' 'historic intervention' to block Qualcomm takeover

Author: John Crabb | Published: 7 Mar 2018

The potential acquisition of semiconductor and telecommunications equipment company Qualcomm by a Singapore-based rival could pose a threat to US national security, according to the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (Cfius). The agency suggested in a letter that the proposed hostile takeover bid could jeopardise US interests, in spite of the transaction only being in the very early stages.

Although the committee generally tends to wait for a formal bid to be placed before taking action, a recent shift in priorities has led to evasive action in the pre-announcement stages of the deal. Earlier this week, Cfius ordered Qualcomm to postpone its annual board meeting, where it was set to vote on whether to replace six members of its board with backers of the takeover.

"This is an extraordinary move by Cfius, in as much as it is a historic intervention to stop a shareholder meeting for...