Britain to protect tech firms after Arm and DeepMind sold overseas

first_imgBritain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson giving a statement in Downing Street in central London on April 27, 2020 after returning to work following more than three weeks off after being hospitalized with the Covid-19 illness.DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS While Arm sold for £24 billion ($31.6 billion), DeepMind only sold for a reported £400 million. Given DeepMind is widely perceived as one of the world leaders in AI today, the Google deal is viewed by experts as a bit of a bargain.Ian Hogarth, an entrepreneur turned tech investor, believes that DeepMind should have been nationalized by the U.K government so that it didn’t have to sell itself to an overseas tech giant.“I find it hard to believe that the U.K. would not be better off were DeepMind still an independent company,” he wrote in an essay in June 2018. “How much would Google sell DeepMind for today? $5 billion? $10 billion? $50 billion? It’s hard to imagine Google selling DeepMind to Amazon, or Tencent or Facebook at almost any price.”- Advertisement – – Advertisement – LONDON – The U.K. government introduced new rules this week that are designed to protect Britain’s best and brightest companies from being gobbled up by other, potentially hostile, nations.But some are asking if the rules, which have been in the works for several years and apply from this Wednesday this week, are too little and too late given two of Britain’s most innovative companies have already been sold overseas. Cambridge-based chipmaker Arm was sold to Japanese tech giant SoftBank in 2016 and London-based artificial intelligence lab DeepMind was sold to Google in 2014.Matt Clifford, the chief executive of start-up factory Entrepreneur First, told CNBC that the government should have “probably” intervened in these deals. “Tech is a big and growing national security issue,” he said, adding that “technological sovereignty is very important.”- Advertisement –center_img Hogarth added: “With hindsight, would it have been better for the U.K. government to block this acquisition and help keep it independent? Even now, is there a case to be made for the U.K. to reverse this acquisition and buy DeepMind out of Google and reinstate it as independent entity?”While DeepMind is a leader in AI, Arm is a leader in semiconductors, or chips. Its energy-efficient chip architectures are used in 95% of the world’s smartphones and it is widely regarded as the jewel in the crown of the British tech industry.“In Arm’s case, I can’t see why some investors here didn’t outbid the foreign folks,” said Jon Crowcroft, a computer science professor at the University of Cambridge. “Arm are a massive success and long term super viable too.”SoftBank is now in the process of trying to sell Arm to U.S. chipmaker Nvidia for $40 billion but there are a number of hurdles to overcome before the deal goes through, including regulators in China.Even though DeepMind and Arm are no longer British in some people’s eyes, there are a number of other fast-growing tech companies that very much are — and could be worth protecting. Security firm Darktrace and AI chipmaker Graphcore, for example.Beyond AI and chips, Crowcroft said that Britain has aerospace and biotech companies that are worth protecting, such as BAE Systems.Some have pointed out that the new rules could potentially make it harder for founders and their investors to sell companies. But Chris Smith, a venture capitalist at Playfair Capital in London, told CNBC he doesn’t think it will have a material impact.“The scope is likely to be fairly limited, both in terms of the number of countries on the ‘no deal’ list and the number that would meet the strategic test,” he said. “In reality, it reflects what we already know, that we have two tech universes — one in the West and one in the East.” – Advertisement –last_img read more

Some Grade School Teams Could be Facing Extinction

first_img State budget vs. job creation – January 22, 2015 admin Hancock County Court News Nov. 3 thorugh Dec. 11 – January 22, 2015 Bio Latest Postscenter_img Latest posts by admin (see all) TRENTON — Concerned about the disappearance of some elementary school athletic teams, the Mount Desert Island Regional School System Board is discussing the possibility of an islandwide amalgamation of grammar-school athletic teams.“I’m pretty certain that next year there won’t be a girls’ basketball team at Trenton Elementary. I don’t know where those kids are going to go,” said board member Charlie Farley during a recent meeting.Currently, Pemetic in Southwest Harbor, and Tremont schools are already regularly combining students from the two schools onto various athletic teams. Meanwhile, Connors-Emerson in Bar Harbor frequently finds itself in the opposite position, turning students away from athletics because of high demand for participation in certain sports.During the MDIRSS discussion, Bunky Dow, athletic director at Mount Desert Island High School, spoke on behalf of the athletics department.This is placeholder textThis is placeholder textHis concerns are logistical problems like travel distance and time and potential difficulties in allowing fifth-graders to play on small-enrollment teams.“Quality of play and safety issues are concerns,” said Dow.According to Scott McFarland, principal of Mount Desert Elementary, plans to restructure elementary athletics programs with more community involvement are in the works.“We are in the planning stages to have some sort of islandwide forum, to which we invite all the stakeholders and policymakers on the island (and Trenton) such as the YMCA, Camp Beech Cliff, the schools,” he said. “It is an opportunity to take a look at everything we’re doing and see if we could be doing it differently – and see what kinds of opportunities exist out there. Because there are changing demographics, and I think it’s time to take a fresh look at things.”For more sports news, pick up a copy of the Mount Desert Islander. House fire in Winter Harbor – October 27, 2014last_img read more

Belgium complete stunning comeback from 2-0 down to beat Japan

first_imgBelgium completed a remarkable revival as they came from the World Cup abyss and beat Japan to reach the quarter-finals.Roberto Martinez’s side were trailing 2-0 when he brought on Marouane Fellaini and Nacer Chadli in the 65th minute, and Fellaini scored the equaliser before Chadli netted a 94th-minute winner.They now face Brazil in the last eight on Friday.Japan looked on their way to a famous win in Rostov after Genki Haraguchi ran onto Gaku Shibasaki’s long ball, which Jan Vertonghen should have cut out, to open the scoring.Takashi Inui’s 25-yard strike made it 2-0 and looked set to take the Asian side to their first ever quarter-finals.Belgium’s Premier League stars – their golden generation – had put in a disappointing performance and Martinez turned to the oft-ridiculed Fellaini and West Brom winger Chadli in his hour of need. Their fortunes changed after that as Vertonghen scored a looping header to get them back into the game.Fellaini then headed in Hazard’s cross to level before Chadli converted Thomas Meunier’s pass to finish off a flowing move and help the Red Devils avoid being the latest victims of a World Cup of shocks.last_img read more