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Updated 11:29 AM EDT, Tue, Jun 16, 2020

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Germany Withdraws Approval for Aixtron Takeover by Chinese Group

The German regulators have decided to reopen a review related to the takeover of Aixtron by a consortium of Chinese investors.

(Photo : https://pixabay.com/en/berlin-flag-germany-flutter-1046686/) The step has been taken to allay the fears about increased acquisition activities undertaken by Chinese investors.

The German regulators have decided to reopen a review related to the takeover of Aixtron by a consortium of Chinese investors.

The step has been taken to allay fears about the increased acquisition activities undertaken by Chinese investors.

Aixtron said the review will determine whether the said transaction would "disturb public order" in Germany or not.

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The German semiconductor equipment supplier released a statement on Monday, confirming that the country's economic ministry had withdrawn its earlier approval for the sale of the company. Aixtron learned about the decision on Friday last week.

Aixtron had announced earlier this year that it had agreed to be acquired by Grand Chip Investment.

Grand Chip is the German unit of Fujian Grand Chip Investment Fund, controlled by Chinese businessman Zhendong Liu, with 51 percent stake. The agreement valued Aixtron at nearly €670 million, with cash offer of €6 per share.

In the wake of large number of acquisitions made by Chinese companies in Germany, the country is currently facing a protectionist backlash.

Earlier this year, Chinese appliance maker Midea acquired German robot manufacturer Kuka for €4.5 billion.

According to EY, Chinese investors acquired 37 German companies during the first half of the year. This number is significantly up from 2015's 39 acquisitions.

German legislation allows the government to intervene, but only in cases where there is likely to be a negative impact on security, defense, financial or energy stability. However, Sigmar Gabriel, Germany's economics minister and deputy chancellor, is pushing for more powers for the government to control such foreign investments. 

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