It comes at a time when SoftBank, the owners of the Cambridge computer chip designer, is deciding where to list Arm following the failure of its sale to Nvidia earlier in the year.
The UK government has been lobbying hard on behalf of The City and the London Stock Exchange as it looks to encourage investors to view the UK as a tech-friendly location.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson, no less, is said to have joined the lobbying and there have even been reports that the government is considering using the National Security and Investment Act to force SoftBank to choose the UK stock market over the Nasdaq in New York.
That’s not really what the act was designed for. Will the UK’s national security be threatened by a listing on the Nasdaq? And if it’s a matter of national security why was a private Japanese company able to buy it in the first place?
While a listing of Arm on the London Stock Exchange would provide a real boost to The City’s tech credentials, any decision needs to be based on whether it’s commercially right for the company.
London is still in the game, according to industry sources, but the lure of New York, “the centre of global hi-tech,” is immense. But wherever the listing takes place it comes at a time when the semiconductor industry is facing severe headwinds.
Both Micron and AMD have warned that demand is weakening and Micron, a memory chip maker, has said that the market has "weakened considerably in a very short period of time."
Having faced chip shortages while trying to meet big orders for the likes of smartphones and PCS, caused by the pandemic, the semiconductor industry is now battling soaring inflation and consumers who are now tightening their belts - in short, sales are tumbling.
According to Gartner, shipments of smartphones to China are expected to fall 18% this year, while worldwide shipments are expected to be down 7% due, in part, to ongoing supply-chain issues and the Russia-Ukraine war.
While the longer-term outlook for the semiconductor industry is positive, benefitting from EVs, 5G and high-speed computing, Arm, wherever it decides to list, is like the rest of the industry in for a challenging few years.