Arm to open Bristol site as tech firm looks to grow in the UK
Arm has announced plans to open a new facility in Bristol.
It comes as the company, whose processing technology is used in smartphones, looks to increases its UK headcount.
It is not yet known whether a specific location in or near Bristol has been identified, how many jobs could be created, or what type of work would be performed there.
The microchip designer, which has its global headquarters in Cambridge and is owned by Japanese multinational conglomerate Softbank Group, told BusinessLive it would be providing more details on the new site “in the coming weeks”.
The announcement comes after “several months” of discussions with government officials and the Financial Conduct Authority,
CEO Rene Haas determined that a US-only listing on the NASDAQ index was the “best path forward” for this year.
He said: “In addition, we are announcing new plans to further increase our UK presence with the opening of a new site in Bristol and continued headcount growth.
“Arm also intends to maintain its headquarters, operations and material IP in the UK. Arm is proud of its British heritage, and continues to work with the British Government.
“We will continue to invest and play a significant role in the British tech ecosystem. Arm also intends to consider a subsequent UK listing in due course.”
Russ Shaw, founder of tech trade network Tech London Advocates and Global Tech Advocates, said Arm’s decision to opt for New York over London was “a significant blow” to the UK sector.
Mr. Shaw, who lately led calls for Prime Minister Rishi Sunak to submit a national semiconductor strategy, said Arm had been “an important global leader” in the field and an “exemplar of British technology and chip design company”.
He said: “There are glimpses of hope from Arm that they still recognise a commercial value in keeping roots in the UK. For example, they are keeping their HQ and material IP in Cambridge and that they plan to open a site in Bristol – but it’s a far cry from an LSE listing and demonstrates a lack of faith in the UK.
“Ultimately, this will reinforce valuable lessons. Arm’s decision must be upheld as a case study for the UK Government of how ‘not to do it’.
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“Arm’s journey to the NASDAQ was somewhat sealed when it was allowed to be sold to an overseas acquirer back in 2016. Nations like the US and China that recognise the strategic value of chip companies would not have allowed such decisions to be made – then or now – and the UK must now endeavour to proactively protect its semiconductor industry.”
The move comes after the company turned down the government’s offer to consider a float on the London Stock Exchange.
Source: Business Live