Of more interest is the regulatory approval. Such approvals are usually considered on an anti-monopoly basis and, as discussed above, the Analog-Maxim merger would appear to pass this test. But could China choose to put a spoke in Analog Devices' wheels almost as a way of marking a transfer of power from the US to China?
With China representing more than one-third of the global chip market, the deal would not appear to make sense without Chinese regulatory approval. China may consider the consolidation of two US companies as the analog sector's dominant twosome controlling a third of the supply of such chips as not being in its national interest.
China has many small analog, mixed-signal and RF IC companies but no presence in the top ten ranking. It may consider a more fragmented analog IC supply chain as being in its favour.
Or, given the feverish atmosphere between the US and Chinese governments, China may simply want to withhold approval as a bargaining chip in the wider trade negotiations between the superpowers.
Either way the deal isn't done and there may be multiple twists and turns before it is.
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