China’s fingerprint chip king says trade war hampering acquisitions – Nikkei Asian Review

What happened: Foreign acquisition plans have been put on hold for the world’s largest fingerprint sensor chip maker. With the exception of Apple, Shenzhen Goodix Technology supplies fingerprint sensor chips to most of the world’s smartphone giants, but according to Chief Operating Officer Pi Bo, “Under the current conditions, it has become very unlikely for Chinese tech companies like us to acquire companies in the US” to buttress research and development efforts.

Why it’s important: With a 33% share of the global fingerprint sensor market and investment from a central government fund, Goodix is a prime example of China’s efforts to reduce dependence on foreign chipmakers. But as smartphone companies increasingly shift from fingerprint sensors to other forms of biometric security like facial recognition, suppliers use acquisitions to stay ahead of client demands. While the trade war has sparked international scrutiny over the trustworthiness of Chinese technology, Pi thinks Goodix is just a “tiny ant” and will avoid being targeted by the U.S.

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