Beloved Former Qualcomm CEO Kicked Off Board After Disclosing Acquisition Bid With Softbank
It's been an incredibly busy few months for Qualcomm, and it appears that the action isn't going to be slowing down anytime soon. In the past week, the US government took a weight off of Qualcomm's shoulders by putting a stop to the Broadcom deal, all in the name of national security. This happened at the same time news of potential Intel interest rose to the surface.
With Qualcomm effectively safe from Broadcom, all is well... right? Not so fast. It's clear that with Intel's interest, Qualcomm is a much hotter target than previously anticipated, and for that reason, former CEO (and son of company founder) Paul Jacobs has decided he'd like to take the company private.
Being either a public or private company can dramatically change what can get done inside of those company walls, and with Qualcomm publicly traded, hostile takeovers like Broadcom's attempted one can continue to take place. A famous example of a big company going private is Dell, and its momentum has proven that by avoiding going public, the company can better focus on growth without distractions.
After Jacobs made his intentions clear, Qualcomm's Board of Directors dismissed him, bringing the total number of remaining members to 10. In a press release, the company thanks Mr. Jacobs for all of his contributions. It's not entirely clear at this point if Mr. Jacobs will continue to pursue the idea, but it seems likely.
Jacobs has already been in touch with different investors, including SoftBank, which acquired Arm last year. SoftBank owning both Arm and Qualcomm sounds like a powerhouse in the making, but considering Broadcom was pushed back in the interest of national security, it's hard to imagine Japan's SoftBank would have an easier time - though just because it's an investor, it doesn't mean it will have a majority share.
One thing's for sure: even with Broadcom out of the picture, Qualcomm is clearly unable to rest. Ultimately, the company says it will pursue any potential deal in its goal to cater to the shareholders, so it will be quite interesting if Mr. Jacobs is able to raise the needed capital.