TECH NEWS – Allen Wu has finally been removed by Arm China’s board. But how!?
How did Wu stay in the saddle for nearly two years when the board voted him out? The answer is simple: he had the company stamp, the chop, the Far Eastern, centuries-old cultural equivalent of the Western formal signature. In essence, he had the power to ignore the decisions of the board en bloc, including the fact that he was voted out as CEO!
Arm China is based in the UK, but it is a joint venture between Arm, a chip design company owned by Softbank of Japan, and Hopu, a Chinese investment firm, and Arm Ltd has a minority stake. However, it is still an important player, as it is one of the largest chip design companies in the world. Wu was ousted because of a suspected conflict of interest, and he denied it. In June 2020, Wu was fired, and he denied even that.
He then tried to get his board-appointed successors fired and then deployed his security team at the company’s Shanghai office to prevent Arm and Hopu representatives from gaining access. At the same time, it emerged that Arm China had become independent of Arm, setting up its research and development division. The problem was that Wu was the legal representative of Arm in Shenzhen. But that story is over: with the help of the local authorities, Arm China has appointed two co-CEOs, Liu Renchen and Eric Chen. The Shenzhen government has accepted Liu as the company’s legal representative, so a new company chop is created, and Wu can no longer play tricks with the old one!
The Shenzhen Administration of Market Regulation also recognises Liu as the company’s legal representative, so the story is closed. But in the meantime, Nvidia tried to buy Arm from Softbank. However, the Japanese owner wants to take the company public in the US. Arm China has long been a distraction, and Wu is unhappy about it. In a statement, he wrote: ” This company has good reasons to believe there are serious legal flaws with the company registry change that the Shenzhen Administration of Market Regulation has handled. This company will defend its legal rights through legal means.” So he’s going to sue until he’s CEO again.