President Trump has stepped-in and blocked the proposed acquisition of Lattice Semiconductor by a Chinese private equity firm.
Lattice had agreed an acquisition by Canyon Bridge Capital Partners in November 2016. But the US president this week blocked the deal based on a recommendation of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) on national security grounds, under the Exon-Florio Amendment.
Lattice Semiconductor execs - who no doubt stood to trouser a lot of money if the acquisition went through - are somewhat disgruntled at the decision.
"The transaction with Canyon Bridge was in the best interests of our shareholders, our customers, our employees and the United States," said Darin G. Billerbeck, CEO of Lattice Semiconductor in a statement.
"We also believe our CFIUS mitigation proposal was the single most comprehensive mitigation proposal ever proposed for a foreign transaction in the semiconductor industry and would have maximised United States national security protection while still enabling Lattice to accept Canyon Bridge's investment and double American jobs.
"While it is disappointing that we were not able to prevail, the Board and I would like to thank Canyon Bridge for their support during this time.
"We will continue to focus on initiatives that will contribute to Lattice's long term success, specifically in areas where our affordable, low power, small form factor devices create advantages.
"Additionally, we remain committed to achieving profitable growth by extending processing and connectivity solutions beyond our core business. Lattice's future remains bright."
The US government's argument is that Canyon Bridge couldn't be trusted not to "take action that threatens to impair the national security of the United States".
The government reserved the right to block any other future acquisition of Lattice Semiconductor at the same time, according to the Order.
"Any transaction or other device entered into or employed for the purpose of, or with the effect of, avoiding or circumventing this order is prohibited," it continued, adding: "The Attorney General is authorised to take any steps necessary to enforce this order."
Just yesterday, the US Department of Homeland Security also ordered a purge of all Kaspersky software from US federal government agencies, based mostly on fears that the company could be ordered by the Russian government to use it to spy on users and exfiltrate sensitive data.
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