Chip-making giant Qualcomm recently announced that Paul Jacobs will not be re-nominated to the company’s Board of Directors at its annual shareholder meeting scheduled for March 23rd. The company said that the decision was made after Jacobs informed the board that he is exploring the possibility of taking the $88 Billion company private.
But Jacobs said in a statement that the Board’s decision to not re-nominate him is “unfortunate and disappointing.” He added that the chipmaker has “real opportunities” but that these would be easier to pursue as a private company.
“These opportunities are challenging as a standalone public company, and there are clear merits to exploring a path to take the company private in order to maximize the company’s long-term performance, deliver superior value to all stockholders, and bolster a critical contributor to American technology,” Jacobs said in a statement.
There is no guarantee that Jacobs will ultimately present a formal proposal. But, if Jacobs makes a bid, Qualcomm said it would “of course evaluate it consistent with its fiduciary duties to shareholders.”
“There are clear merits to exploring a path to take the company private in order to maximize the company’s long-term performance, deliver superior value to all stockholders, and bolster a critical contributor to American technology,” Jacobs said.
Per a CNBC report, Jacobs had previously expressed interest in taking the company private before. Jacobs said in a statement that he is glad Qualcomm’s Board would be willing to evaluate a proposal, if presented. The Financial Times first reported Jacobs had approached multiple investors, including Japan’s SoftBank, to get funding for an acquisition bid.
Jacobs has supported Qualcomm’s resistance to Broadcom’s bid, but he increasingly clashed with other members of the company’s Board, including Chief Executive Steve Mollenkopf, over how Qualcomm defended itself, according to people familiar with the matter.
Qualcomm shares rose less than 1 percent to $61.15 in after-hours trading following the news on Friday, giving the company a market capitalization of around $90 billion.