The European Commission (EC) has approved Intel’s $17bn acquisition of rival Altera.
The deal was announced in June subject to the usual regulatory hurdles. The EC has now approved the purchase, and competition commissioner Margrethe Vestager said that it demonstrated an efficient approval process.
"I am glad that we can approve this transaction, which shows that multibillion euro deals in complex industries can be cleared unconditionally after an initial investigation,” she said.
“Our decision demonstrates that relevant deals can be swiftly approved if they raise no competition concerns.”
The EC was confident that there is no significant overlap between the types of semiconductors the companies produce, meaning that the overall market should not suffer as a result.
Intel made the move for Altera earlier this year in a bid to become a dominant player in the cloud and Internet of Things markets as the firm's traditional server and PC markets diminish.
“With this acquisition, we will harness the power of Moore’s Law to make the next generation of solutions not just better, but able to do more,” said Intel CEO Brian Krzanich at the time.
Tom Hackenberg, principal analyst for embedded processing at IHS, explained that Intel had to do this as its traditional areas of revenue for microprocessors in PCs, tablets and desktop is stalling, while its mobile efforts are not paying off.
“In the last several years, demand has stagnated for desktop PCs, and the forecast for portable PCs has begun to slow,” he said.
“Much of this market sluggishness has been related to the introduction of more portable computing platforms, such as smartphones and tablets.”
Picking up Altera will benefit Intel, as the latter generates around $2bn a year in revenues from other areas of the market, specifically the data centre and technology related to programmable logic devices and system-on-chip field programmable gate arrays.
“Intel supplies a host of integrated chip solutions to many markets beyond computers, and it is in many of these markets that Intel has the most potential for continued growth,” added Hackenberg.
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