Qualcomm hit by China probe

City A.M. Reporter
CHINESE regulators have launched an anti-trust investigation into Qualcomm, the US mobile chipmaker said yesterday, with some experts suggesting that China’s government may be seeking leverage in royalty negotiations.

China’s largest mobile phone carrier is preparing a major move to 4G wireless technology next year, and Qualcomm has been hoping that will provide it with a major new source of royalty revenue. The company said it was not aware of any antitrust violations but would cooperate with the probe by China’s National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC).

The NDRC did not say why the company was being investigated, according to Qualcomm. China’s state media on Sunday quoted an NDRC official saying regulators would focus antitrust investigations on six industries, ranging from technology to medicine.

The US company reported $12.3bn in revenue from China in the 12 months through September, equal to 49 per cent of its total revenue.