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Qualcomm CEO says the company is focusing on dividends to add value to shareholders

Qualcomm is currently focused on using dividends to boost shareholder value, rather than repurchasing its shares, CEO Christiano Amon told CNBC’s Jim Cramer on Monday.

“We have increased our dividends. We’ve been talking about year-over-year dividend targets, high single digits, low double digit growth, and we’re going to keep looking for an opportunistic buyout,” Amon told Mad Money.

Qualcomm announced on 9 March that it approved a 10% quarterly cash dividend increase, raising the dividend from 68 cents to 75 cents per common share and increasing the annualized dividend payout to $3 per common share.

“We want to maintain strategic flexibility, including with regard to mergers and acquisitions, because we see that diversification works for the company … We want it to grow faster,” Amon said.

The CEO’s comments came after Cramer asked why Qualcomm wasn’t buying back its shares. Chip shares fell last Friday after JPMorgan removed Qualcomm from its April Analyst Focus list, but rose 4.64% on Monday, leading to a larger rally in tech stocks.

Company announced on Monday that it completed the acquisition of Arriver from SSW Partners to improve its Advanced Driver Assistance System software.

Disclosure: Cramer’s Charitable Trust holds shares in Qualcomm.

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