The Qualcomm defence: a possible new hostile takeover tactic

Author: John Crabb | Published: 2 May 2018

US companies in certain sectors that are being targeted by a hostile takeover could consider unilateral filing with the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (Cfius) as an extra line of defence. This is one potential lesson of the successful blocking of Singaporean company Broadcom’s attempted acquisition of US semiconductor company Qualcomm earlier this year.

While it is unlikely to become commonplace, sources suggest that in the wake of the successful Broadcom/Qualcomm interception it will cause companies on both sides of the divide to reconsider their options.

Will firms add Cfius to their defensive toolkits? Brian Curran, partner at Hogan Lovells in Washington DC, said that when Qualcomm requested Cfius review the national security implications of the transaction the company was in effect asking the agency to potentially block it. The deal was unique in that respect though is likely to have an impact on how...