British chip maker Arm Holdings – a unit of SoftBank Group Corp. – will sell a 51% stake in its China operations to a consortium of Chinese investors, helping the country move closer to its goal of technology independence.
The stake will go for $775 million to the investor group led by China Investment Corp-backed Hopu Investment and the state-run Silk Road Fund. SoftBank will retain the remaining 49%.
China represents one of Arm’s most important markets, accounting for around one-fifth of the company’s $1.83 billion in revenue in the last fiscal year. The chips designed by Arm are licensed to Chinese semiconductor companies whose sales form a $132 billion industry.
“China wants to have an indigenous and controllable local supply base,” Executive Vice President of Arm Holdings Rene Haas told the Wall Street Journal. “Doing a joint venture of this nature would best position us to be able to capitalise on that growth.”