The haggling continues in what could be the largest-ever tech acquisition.
On Wednesday afternoon Qualcomm, the world's largest maker of chips and processors for phones, said in a statement that potential buyer Broadcom had "made an inadequate offer even worse" when it lowered its buyout bid earlier in the day.
Broadcom, a maker of chips for everything from cable modems to set-top boxes to digital video recorders, had dropped its offer for Qualcomm to approximately $117 billion from the more than $121 billion it had named about two weeks back. That's because on Tuesday, Qualcomm had upped its own bid for another chipmaker, NXP Semiconductors, taking it to about $44 billion from an earlier price of $39 billion.
"Qualcomm's board acted against the best interests of its stockholders by unilaterally transferring excessive value to NXP's activist stockholders," Broadcom said in a statement announcing its reduced bid.
Qualcomm responded by saying its board had concluded that Qualcomm is far more valuable with NXP than without.
Broadcom announced its original offer for Qualcomm, an unsolicited bid of $130 billion, in November.
If the buyout were to go through, it would create a chip superpower.