Applied Micro Circuits Corporation (AMCC) - NASDAQ
  • Fri, Mar. 11, 1:21 PM
    • Optical component vendors Fabrinet (FN +6.3%), Alliance Fiber (AFOP +3.8%), and NeoPhotonics (NPTN +4.6%) are rallying after Finisar (FNSR +18.3%) posted mixed FQ3 results, offered in-line FQ4 sales guidance and above-consensus EPS guidance, and forecast datacom sales would pick up as Web 2.0/hyperscale clients deploy 100G transceivers. Telecom chipmakers Inphi (IPHI +3.8%), Cavium (CAVM +3.9%), and AppliedMicro (AMCC +4.4%) are also doing well. The Nasdaq is up 1.3%.
    • Craig-Hallum's Richard Shannon and B. Riley's Dave Kang have upgraded Finisar to Buy. Shannon thinks the FQ4 guidance suggests Finisar could be reaching a turning point, and sees 100G component adoption providing a margin boost. Kang is also upbeat about 100G sales.
    • Piper's Troy Jensen (Overweight rating, target hiked by $3 to $20): "The upbeat FQ3 results and forward guidance were driven by robust demand for 100G Telco and Datacom optics. We believe telco strength continues with demand from China driving near-term upside and U.S. metro deployments will act as a tailwind in the back half of 2016 ... We also believe Finisar is one of the first to materially benefit from the 100G Datacom cycle, and expect QSFP28 [100G transceivers] to grow meaningfully for the next several quarters. We are expecting the real QSFP28 inflection to begin in 2H16, and believe this accelerated demand will be reflected in the July quarter guide."
    • On the earnings call (transcript), CEO Jerry Rawls stated Chinese demand is benefiting from long-haul and wireless buildouts by the country's big-3 carriers, North American demand from metro buildouts, and broader telecom demand from sales of wavelength selective switches, ROADM line cards, and 100G/200G transceivers. He added Finisar is capacity constrained for the aforementioned products, and is building capacity to address the issue.
    • Component makers rallied last month in response to good numbers from Oclaro and Fabrinet.
    | Fri, Mar. 11, 1:21 PM | 1 Comment
  • Wed, Mar. 9, 3:01 PM
    • AppliedMicro (AMCC +5.3%) has announced Taiwanese contract manufacturer Wistron (services Facebook, and possibly other Internet giants developing their own servers) will use the company's X-Gene 1 ARM server CPU in the X5, a 5U chassis server design that's compliant with Facebook's Open Compute Project (OCP - creates open-source designs for dense/low-power data center hardware).
    • The announcement coincides with the March 9-10 OCP U.S. Summit (taking place in San Jose). AppliedMicro: "The X5 is a rack-mountable server system with a 10GE backplane that can support up to five compute node trays, each with four X-Gene CPUs, for a total of 20 compute nodes per chassis. The platform can also support five storage trays with one X-Gene CPU and either ten 3.5” hard disk drive (HDD) bays or 16 2.5” HDD bays per tray, enabling either 50 or 80 HDDs in a single chassis platform configuration."
    • The company has also announced a partnership with Vapor IO, a startup working on hardware architectures and management software for flexible, high-density, data center infrastructures. AppliedMicro's X-Gene 2 server CPUs will support Vapor IO's OpenDCRE data center management/monitoring API.
    | Wed, Mar. 9, 3:01 PM | 3 Comments
  • Dec. 29, 2015, 2:29 PM
    • Telecom chipmaker and ARM server CPU developer AppliedMicro (AMCC +6.6%) is rallying after Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) M&A chief Wendell Brooks signaled more deals are likely following yesterday's closing of Intel's $16.7B purchase of FPGA developer Altera. As are telecom and data center analog/mixed-signal chipmaker InPhi (IPHI +4.2%) and FPGA/CPLD developer Lattice Semi (LSCC +7.7%).
    • Brooks: "We are looking for adjacencies where we can bring our [manufacturing] process advantage to bear. Altera is a great first acquisition ... We’re doing things very differently than we have in the past ... The market very much rewards companies like Avago that are leading the charge. I think the impetus will continue."
    • AppliedMicro has long been the subject of M&A speculation. Meanwhile, Lattice CEO Darin Billerbeck suggested in June his company is open to a sale.
    • Of note: AppliedMicro and Lattice's shares have often made big moves in the past in the absence of major news, and all three companies have betas well above 1.
    | Dec. 29, 2015, 2:29 PM | 7 Comments
  • Nov. 17, 2015, 3:06 PM
    • Drexel Hamilton has launched coverage on AppliedMicro (NASDAQ:AMCC) with a Buy rating an $11 target. Shares are back above $7.
    • The launch comes a day after AppliedMicro unveiled the X-Gene 3, the latest entry for its ARM server CPU line - it features 32 cores operating at up to 3GHz, relies on TSMC's recently-launched 16nm FinFET manufacturing process, and is expected to begin sampling in 2H16.
    • The company also announced a high-speed interconnect technology called X-Tend, which is promised to connect multiple X-Gene CPUs with large memory pools at low latencies, and a partnership with Italian custom server OEM E4 Computer Engineering to bring X-Gene-based systems to market.
    | Nov. 17, 2015, 3:06 PM
  • Nov. 3, 2015, 2:46 PM
    • After slightly beating FQ2 revenue estimates and posting in-line EPS, AppliedMicro (NASDAQ:AMCC) guided on its earnings call (transcript) for FQ3 revenue of $40.5M (+/- $2M) and EPS of -$0.03 (+/- $0.02) vs. a consensus of $40.7M and -$0.03. With various chipmakers having issued soft Q4 guidance, markets appear to be breathing a sigh of relief.
    • CEO Paramesh Gopi noted book-to-bill was above 1, and that backlog currently covers over 95% of FQ3 sales guidance. "Multiple new engagements" are said to have been secured for AppliedMicro's X-Gene ARM server CPUs since the July 30 earnings call, with "very strong traction" reported for China (China Unicom is a client). Meanwhile, the company's X-Weave PHY chips are "the sole source 100 gigabit and 400 gigabit high-density secure physical layer solution for the industry's leading switch vendor" (presumably Cisco).
    • Financials: Gross margin (non-GAAP) fell to 55.6% from 57% a year ago. Job cuts helped operating expenses drop 12% to $25M. AppliedMicro ended FQ2 with $75.5M in cash, and no debt.
    • FQ2 results, PR
    | Nov. 3, 2015, 2:46 PM
  • Oct. 14, 2015, 3:10 PM
    • Though still well below its May/June highs, the Philadelphia Semi Index (SOXX +2.9%) has reached its highest levels since August following calendar Q3 results from Intel, Linear Technology, and ASML, and reports SanDisk and Fairchild are in buyout talks with potential suitors (respectively Micron/Western Digital and ON Semi/Infineon). The Nasdaq is down slightly.
    • Intel (up 1.5%) beat Q3 estimates and provided in-line Q4 guidance. ASP strength and signs of stabilizing PC demand are overshadowing a full-year guidance cut for Intel's server CPU division, Linear (up 4.6%) posted mixed FQ1 results and issued above-consensus FQ2 guidance.
    • Lithography equipment giant ASML (ASML -0.4%) beat Q3 EPS estimates and posted nearly in-line sales, but also guided for Q4 revenue of €1.4B ($1.61B), below a $1.77B consensus. Soft demand from foundry clients is blamed. Credit Suisse and Cowen argue ASML is hurt by a lack of exposure to the 3D NAND flash ramp.
    • Aside from Linear and companies associated with the SanDisk/Fairchild reports, chipmakers seeing big gains include NXP (NXPI +4.6%), Freescale (FSL +3.6%), Himax (HIMX +4.2%), Qorvo (QRVO +4.9%), Cypress (CY +6.9%), AppliedMicro (AMCC +4.9%), and Linear/Fairchild peers Semtech (SMTC +4.7%), MangaChip (MX +4.6%), Diodes (DIOD +4%), and Power Integrations (POWI +4.2%). Chip packaging/testing firms ChipMOS (IMOS +3.8%) and Amkor (AMKR +5.9%) are also rallying.
    • With much already priced in, chip equipment makers are also doing well, in spite of ASML's guidance, a fresh $400M cut to Intel's 2015 capex budget (to $7.3B), and a Gartner forecast for global wafer fab equipment spend to drop 0.5% in 2015 and 2.5% in 2016 before returning to growth.
    • Chip equipment gainers include Lam Research (LRCX +3.6%), KLA-Tencor (KLAC +1.6%), Kulicke & Soffa (KLIC +3.3%), and Teradyne (TER +1.9%). Possibly helping: Intel stated on its earnings call its capex will rise in 2016 from 2015's depressed levels.
    • Chip ETFs: SMH, XSD, PSI, SOXL, USD, SOXS, SSG
    | Oct. 14, 2015, 3:10 PM | 4 Comments
  • Sep. 30, 2015, 10:25 AM
    • Mellanox (MLNX -7.3%) has sold off after announcing it's buying network processor (NPU) vendor and Israeli tech peer EZchip (EZCH +14.3%) for $811M in cash. Meanwhile, telecom/data center chipmakers Cavium (CAVM +3.5%), AppliedMicro (AMCC +4.1%), and PMC-Sierra (PMCS +7.9%) are rallying amid a 2% Nasdaq gain - each company's product line includes (but is by no means limited to) NPUs.
    • Whereas Mellanox is focused on high-speed data center connectivity hardware (e.g. adapter cards, switches, switching and adapter ICs), EZchip still gets the majority of its revenue from NPUs going into edge routers and other telecom hardware. However, the company has been trying to expand its data center footprint, via its new NPS processor line (supports deeper packet analysis) and its Tilera unit (acquired in 2014, set to launch a processor supporting 100 ARM cores).
    • Mellanox asserts EZchip's "products and expertise in security, deep packet inspection, video, and storage processing" will help it "deliver complete end-to-end, intelligent 10, 25, 40, 50, and 100Gb/s interconnect and processing solutions for advanced data center and [telecom] edge platforms." The purchase price is equal to 5.9x EZchip's 2016 sales consensus; Mellanox trades for just 2.3x 2016E sales.
    • Update: Summit Research's Srini Nandury thinks Mellanox's selloff stems from the company's failure to reiterate Q3 guidance during today's conference call, in spite of repeatedly being asked by analysts to do so.
    | Sep. 30, 2015, 10:25 AM
  • Aug. 18, 2015, 2:23 PM
    • Having already felt the effects of a string of downbeat earnings reports, chip stocks are underperforming today amid a 0.5% drop for the Nasdaq. The Philadelphia Semi Index (SOXX -1.7%) is near its 2015 lows, and now down 9% YTD. Fresh Chinese macro fears - the Shanghai and Shenzhen exchanges both fell sharply overnight - could be playing a role.
    • Micron (MU -4.9%), 4 days removed from hosting its analyst day and 1 day removed from seeing a slew of analysts respond, is among the names down strongly. BofA/Merrill downgraded NAND flash rival SanDisk and NAND controller vendor Silicon Motion to Underperform this morning, which citing Micron and SK Hynix's capex plans - Hynix says it's thinking of spending $39B on fab investments.
    • Other major decliners that are tied to the industry include Skyworks (SWKS -5.3%), Qorvo (QRVO -3.6%), IDT (IDTI -6.3%), AppliedMicro (AMCC -4.3%), ChipMOS (IMOS -4.3%), Rambus (RMBS -3.8%), Silicon Labs (SLAB -3.1%), Semtech (SMTC -3.5%), MagnaChip (MX -4.4%), and Amkor (AMKR -3.6%).
    • Needless to say, multiples for many hard-hit names have come down considerably over the last two months.
    • Chips ETFs: SMH, XSD, PSI, SOXL, USD, SOXS, SSG
    | Aug. 18, 2015, 2:23 PM | 29 Comments
  • Aug. 14, 2015, 1:52 PM
    • Douglas Ahrens, AppliedMicro's (NASDAQ:AMCC) CFO since Oct. 2013, is leaving to become the CFO of a private software company, effective Aug. 21.
    • Karen Rogge, whose resume includes stints as Extreme Networks' CFO and Seagate's finance VP, will serve as interim CFO while AppliedMicro looks for a permanent replacement. The company is reiterating its FQ2 guidance.
    • FBR's Chris Rolland (Market Perform rating) calls Ahrens' departure "a meaningful negative" for the telecom IC/ARM server CPU vendor. "Mr. Ahrens played a key role in instituting and enforcing the cost-cutting program that was essential to conserving the company’s cash balance of just $77 million ... While Karen Rogge appears to be a stop-gap candidate, it will be challenging to find an equivalent and permanent CFO willing and capable to make the tough decisions needed to see this company successfully through [its] transition."
    | Aug. 14, 2015, 1:52 PM | 1 Comment
  • Jul. 31, 2015, 6:25 PM
    • AppliedMicro (NASDAQ:AMCC) rallied to $6.21 today after beating FQ1 estimates and guiding on its earnings call (transcript) for FQ2 revenue of $39M (+/- $2M) and EPS of -$0.03 (+/- $0.02). That's close to a consensus of $39.2M and -$0.03, and better than feared given the light calendar Q3 outlooks offered by many other chipmakers with strong networking/telecom exposure.
    • Also: AppliedMicro said it landed over 20 new "end-customer engagements" during FQ1 for its X-Gene ARM server CPUs - clients are said to include several large financial institutions and a major Asia-Pac data center operator. A second-gen CPU (X-Gene 2) is undergoing customer evaluation, and a 3rd-gen product that will rely on an advanced 16nm FinFET manufacturing process (presumably TSMC's) has reached the tape-out stage.
    • FQ1 book-to-bill was above 1. Strong demand for AppliedMicro's X-Weave Ethernet/OTN connectivity chips (100G-capable) partly offset soft PowerPC processor sales.
    • FQ1 results, PR
    | Jul. 31, 2015, 6:25 PM
  • Jul. 8, 2015, 11:37 AM
    • Chip stocks are underperforming as the Nasdaq registers a 1.2% decline. The Philadelphia Semi Index (SOXX -2.6%) is now down 13% from a June 1 peak of $101.80, and 4% YTD; it's still up 87% from a Nov. 2012 low of $47.58.
    • Plunging Chinese equity markets could be weighing on the group. With retail Chinese investors having set up brokerage accounts en masse over the last year, there are plenty of concerns about the reverse wealth effect of a crash. The Economist reccently downplayed those worries, noting a relatively modest 15% of Chinese household assets are invested in stocks.
    • Major decliners among chip developers include Skyworks (SWKS -4.9%), Qorvo (QRVO -5.6%), InvenSense (INVN -5.6%), NXP (NXPI -4.7%), Freescale (FSL -4%), MoSys (MOSY -9.4%), AppliedMicro (AMCC -5.1%), Cavium (CAVM -3.8%), and Silicon Motion (SIMO -6.4%). SIMO also fell yesterday after favorably adjusting its Q2 sales guidance. Skyworks and Qorvo sold off yesterday morning before rebounding in afternoon trading.
    • Other names tied to the industry that are seeing heavy selling pressure include ARM (ARMH -4%), TowerJazz (TSEM -5.1%), UMC (UMC -4.4%), Veeco (VECO -4.3%), and Axcelis (ACLS -4.6%).
    • Chip ETFs: SMH, XSD, PSI, SOXL, USD, SOXS, SSG
    | Jul. 8, 2015, 11:37 AM | 6 Comments
  • Jun. 29, 2015, 10:36 AM
    • AppliedMicro (NASDAQ:AMCC) has tumbled out of the gate. Volume (1.21M shares) has already topped a 3-month daily average of 931K.
    • Shares fell more moderately on Friday, taking part in a chip stock selloff that followed Micron's results/guidance. The telecom IC/ARM server CPU developer is now down 18% from a June 19 peak of $8.09, after having previously soared with the help of M&A hopes.
    | Jun. 29, 2015, 10:36 AM | 4 Comments
  • Jun. 26, 2015, 2:48 PM
    • Chip stocks are seeing outsized losses (SOXX -2.6%) amid a 0.8% drop for the Nasdaq following DRAM/NAND flash giant Micron's FQ3 miss and weak FQ4 guidance - the numbers were blamed on a mixture of soft PC demand, associated DRAM price pressure, and a manufacturing process transition. Some analysts have argued Micron's issues are at least partly company-specific and/or that PC and DRAM demand will improve in 2H15.
    • The Philadelphia Semi Index is now down 7% from a June 1 peak of $101.80. It's still up 2% YTD, and (thanks partly to an industry M&A wave) roughly 2x from its fall 2012 lows.
    • In addition to PC-exposed Intel and AMD, chip stocks sporting large declines include Qorvo (QRVO -4.9%), Sigma Designs (SIGM -5.7%), MoSys (MOSY -7.9%), Anadigics (ANAD -10.8%), Silicon Motion (SIMO -6.5%), Inphi (IPHI -5.3%), PMC-Sierra (PMCS -3.8%), ON Semi (ON -4.2%), AppliedMicro (AMCC -3.7%), and Vimicro (VIMC -5.3%).
    • Chip ETFs: SMH, XSD, PSI, SOXL, USD, SOXS, SSG
    | Jun. 26, 2015, 2:48 PM | 15 Comments
  • Jun. 17, 2015, 3:53 PM
    • With buyout speculation continuing to swirl, AppliedMicro (NASDAQ:AMCC) has soared on volume of 2.46M shares, nearly 3x a 3-month daily average of 838K. Yesterday, TheDeal suggested (while citing "industry sources") the recent addition of major investor Chris Zepf to AMCC's board could be a sign the company is open to being acquired. "With Chris on the board, the rest of the board members have to start thinking about maximizing shareholder value," said one of TheDeal's sources.
    • Sources also speculated Qualcomm could bid for the telecom IC/ARM server CPU developer, as the chip industry continues to rapidly consolidate. Ascendiant Capital's Cody Acree has named both Qualcomm and Marvell as potential suitors.
    • Thanks in no small part to M&A hopes, AMCC is now up 60% from an April low of $4.89.
    | Jun. 17, 2015, 3:53 PM | 1 Comment
  • Jun. 10, 2015, 5:38 PM
    | Jun. 10, 2015, 5:38 PM | 6 Comments
  • Jun. 2, 2015, 1:41 PM
    • Though still well below a 52-week high of $11.75, AppliedMicro (NASDAQ:AMCC) has jumped to its highest levels since last October. 1.31M shares have been traded, easily topping a 3-month daily average of 750K.
    • Possibly helping: AppliedMicro is demoing an HP (NYSE:HPQ) Moonshot server running on AppliedMicro's X-Gene ARM server CPU at HP's Discover conference (runs from June 2-4).
    • HP launched the server, known as the ProLiant m400, last September. Back in April, AppliedMicro said it hit its goal of shipping 10K X-Gene CPUs in FY14 (ended in March).
    | Jun. 2, 2015, 1:41 PM | 2 Comments
Company Description
Applied Micro Circuits Corp. engages in the provision of silicon solutions for next-generation cloud infrastructure and data centers, as well as connectivity products for edge, metro and long haul communications equipment. Its products include the X-Gene ARM 64-bit Server on a Chip solution, or... More
Sector: Technology
Industry: Semiconductor - Integrated Circuits
Country: United States