Bulletins

Broadcom settles FTC charges over its loyalty deals on chip parts

The U.S. said the company used exclusivity agreements to illegally extend its monopoly in the supply of semiconductor components for television and broadband devices.

Broadcom has agreed to stop putting exclusivity deals around its semiconductor components, which help run TV and broadband devices, to settle complaints from the U.S. Federal Trade Commission that its agreements violated competition laws.


Under the proposed settlement, which the FTC announced Friday and is now leaving to public comment for 30 days, Broadcom must also stop retaliating against customers who do business with its competitors.

The FTC alleged the company has a monopoly in the markets for those components, and that agreements with at least 10 original equipment manufacturers as well as major service providers illegally maintained that monopoly. The FTC cited AT&T as an example of the service providers.

"By entering exclusivity and loyalty agreements with key customers at two levels of the supply chain, Broadcom created insurmountable barriers for companies trying to compete with Broadcom," the FTC said.

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