UK gives Broadcom-VMware deal the green light

21 Aug 2023

Image: © JHVEPhoto/

The nod from the UK follows a similar decision from the European Commission last month.

A month after giving the deal a provisional nod, the UK’s Competition Markets Authority (CMA) has approved Broadcom’s purchase of VMware.

The latest green light for the deal follows approval from the European Commission last month, which was granted under the provision that the hardware giant complies with interoperability commitments.

Following an initial phase one investigation in the UK, the CMA identified competition concerns warranting a more in-depth review, considering new evidence and stakeholder feedback.

The panel explored concerns that the deal could harm the ability of Broadcom’s rivals to compete if the merged company were to make their products work less well or not at all with VMware’s server virtualisation software.

However, the investigation concluded that the potential financial benefit to Broadcom and VMware doing this would not outweigh the potential financial cost in terms of lost business.

Richard Feasey, chair of the independent panel carrying out the phase two inquiry, said in a statement that the CMA has found no competition concerns. “We have concluded the deal can go ahead.”

The deal, which comprises $61bn in equity and an assumption of $8bn in debt, was first announced in May 2022 and since then has been undergoing several investigations by regulators – including the EU – amid competition concerns.

At the time of raising concerns, the European Commission said Broadcom is the leading supplier of these products and said the markets are “very concentrated”. The European authority said Broadcom could foreclose the hardware of competitors by “delaying or degrading their access to VMware’s server virtualisation software”.

However, EU competition chief Margrethe Vestager eventually gave the deal the green light, saying the commitments offered by Broadcom will enable its only rival, Marvell, to continue competing on equal footing.

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Jenny Darmody is the editor of Silicon Republic