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HomeTechnologyArm Holdings IPO: UK-based chip designer valued at £43.6bn ahead of eagerly...

Arm Holdings IPO: UK-based chip designer valued at £43.6bn ahead of eagerly awaited return to the stock market

UK-based chip designer Arm Holdings has secured a $54.5bn (£43.6bn) value ahead of its eagerly anticipated return to the stock market later on Thursday.

Shares in the firm, majority-owned by Japan’s SoftBank Group, are scheduled to start trading today on the Nasdaq in New York.

High demand from investors meant it was able to sell the 95.5 million shares on offer – a 9.4% stake – at the top end of a lowered price range, $51 (£41) per share.

The overall market value – while better than the $40bn (£32bn) it would have achieved through a sale of Arm to Nvidia that was abandoned last year – is below the $64bn (£51bn) valuation that SoftBank had placed on Arm only last month.

The initial public offering (IPO) is the biggest for Wall Street since Rivian’s market debut in 2021.

Firms have been reluctant to seek flotations amid the global economic slowdown, but the tech sphere has outperformed.

Arm, which has its headquarters in Cambridge and employs 2,800 staff, is an important cog as its processor designs are used in the vast majority of the world’s smartphones.

Smartphone sales have been among areas to drag in the tough economy – hitting Arm’s revenues, which rely on royalties.

It is seeking a greater influence in the cloud computing market while artificial intelligence (AI) is also offering the prospect of greater rewards.

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Many of its major clients, including AI specialist Nvidia, Apple and Samsung, have snapped up shares in the IPO.

Share trading is due to begin at 2.30pm UK time and an opening price will be declared sometime later.

London, where Arm was listed until SoftBank’s buyout in 2016, was snubbed for the listing.

Susannah Streeter, head of money and markets at Hargreaves Lansdown, said Arm could have pushed for an even higher price but was “playing it safe” to try to ensure a surge in the share price once trading gets underway.

She said of the decision to float in New York: “London has been working hard to position itself as a tech hub in an era when it has struggled to attract fast growing companies to launch an IPO, and even the Prime Minister intervened to try and persuade SoftBank to list Arm in the UK.

“The City has begun to make changes to try to make London more attractive to founder led firms. There are plans to further remove complexity in rules, such as scrapping the premier and standard segments for one simpler main category, but the changes aren’t yet cutting through.

“Listings in the UK have reduced by 40% since 2008, and there are no further big IPOs in the pipeline in London this year.”

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