Fri, Nov. 6, 5:38 PM
Thu, Oct. 22, 12:24 PM
- The Philadelphia Semi Index (SOXX +3%) has risen above $90 for the first time since July on a day the Nasdaq is up 1.5%. Helping out: Texas Instruments (TXN +10.4%) soundly beat Q3 estimates, reported positive growth for its analog and embedded processing (DSP/microcontroller) units in spite of a customer inventory correction, and (with the help of iPhone content gains) provided mostly above-consensus Q4 guidance.
- Meanwhile, Cypress Semi (up 4.1%) is rallying in spite of posting mixed Q3 results and issuing light Q4 guidance. A new $450M buyback is helping.
- TI/Cypress microcontroller peers NXP (NXPI +4.2%), Freescale (FSL +3.5%), STMicroelectronics (STM +2.5%), and Microchip (MCHP +2.9%) are among the gainers. As are TI analog/mixed-signal peers ON Semi (ON +5%), Intersil (ISIL +3.2%), IDT (IDTI +3.6%), Monolithic (MPWR +3.3%), and Silicon Labs (SLAB +2.6%).
- Other notable gainers include InvenSense (INVN +2.6%), Nvidia (NVDA +3.5%), Cavium (CAVM +4.4%), Knowles (KN +3.6%), and Lattice Semi (LSCC +7%).
- On its earnings call (transcript), TI mentioned automotive chip demand (boosted by growing chip content in various systems) was strong. Industrial sales were roughly flat (better than expected), and personal electronics benefited from "demand from one customer" (likely Apple). Wireless infrastructure fell 30% Y/Y (Chinese weakness), but rose Q/Q.
- Chip stocks also outperformed yesterday after Western Digital announced it's buying SanDisk, Lam Research announced it's buying KLA-Tencor, and CPU core giant ARM (ARMH +2.7%) beat Q3 revenue estimates (EPS slightly missed) with the help of a 20% Y/Y increase in ARM chip shipments to 3.6B, and stated it expects 2015 revenue to be in-line with market expectations.
- Chip ETFs: SMH, XSD, PSI, SOXL, USD, SOXS, SSG
Wed, Oct. 21, 9:15 AM
Wed, Oct. 21, 6:30 AM
Tue, Oct. 20, 7:12 PM
- Ahead of Wednesday morning's Q3 report, ARM (NASDAQ:ARMH) has disclosed the purchase of products and other assets of Carbon Design Systems, a U.S.-based provider of virtual (software-based) prototyping software for ARM SoC developers, for an undisclosed sum. Carbon's staff will be joining ARM.
- ARM, which plans to sell Carbon's products through its IP exchange: "The integration of Carbon's virtual prototyping products into the ARM portfolio will deliver access to ARM IP earlier in the design cycle ... Carbon has created a comprehensive library of ARM processor and system models that can be extended easily to create cycle-accurate virtual prototypes of any new ARM-based SoC ... [Carbon] already works with the worlds leading semiconductor vendors, all of whom license ARM processor IP."
- Separately, ARM has unveiled the Mali-470, a low-power GPU core for embedded/wearable devices (a source of much of the company's CPU core unit growth). ARM claims a 2x improvement in energy efficiency relative to the older Mali-400, as well as a 10% less die space. Power efficiency and performance improvements are also promised relative to the prior-gen Mali-450.
- The 470 squares off against GPU cores from market leader Imagination (OTCPK:IGNMF). ARM inked 9 Mali GPU licenses in Q2. The smart TV market has been a strong point for the platform.
- Prior ARM acquisitions
Tue, Oct. 20, 5:30 PM
Fri, Sep. 4, 5:36 PM
Thu, Sep. 3, 3:01 PM
- IBM (IBM +1.3%) is partnering with CPU core giant ARM (ARMH +1.2%) to enable devices supporting ARM's mbed IoT software/services platform to automatically register with IBM's IoT Foundation platform, and thereby access cloud-based IBM analytics services.
- IBM: "This unifies [mbed and IoT Foundation] at the point where information gathered from deployed sensors in any connected device is delivered to the cloud for analysis. The IoT connection also enables delivery of actionable events to control equipment or provide users with alerts or other information. For example, the triggering of an alarm message on a washing machine to ask the owner to confirm a breakdown engineer appointment if a fault is detected."
- With ARM's CPU cores used by billions of mobile and embedded devices (and billions more on the way), a wide variety of products can be covered. In addition to analytics tools, IBM's IoT Foundation supports the development of cloud apps (through the Bluemix platform) for analyzing IoT-generated data, and security tools for protecting it.
- ARM, meanwhile, has followed up on mbed by launching IFC, a framework for quickly creating networks of embedded, Web-connected, ARM-based devices.
Wed, Sep. 2, 9:51 AM
- [W]e think ARM’s stock is now beginning to reflect the potential of slower royalty growth in 2016 versus higher 2010-2013 growth," writes JPMorgan, upgrading ARM (NASDAQ:ARMH) to Neutral. "With ARM stock having corrected since the beginning of July, we believe the stock is discounting the impact of the smartphone correction even though consensus estimates likely remain too high.”
- The firm adds ARM - historically afforded high multiples due to its dominant position in the CPU core market - trades at 25.7x 2016E EPS, down from 35x at the beginning of the year and a peak (forward?) multiple of ~50x in 2011.
- Shares are higher as the Nasdaq posts a 1.1% gain.
Wed, Aug. 12, 12:39 PM
- "We now believe that Intel (INTC +0.9%) will capture roughly 50% of Apple’s modem business in the upcoming iPhones due to launch September 9th," writes Northland Securities' Gus Richard. "[W]e estimate that this win could represent $750M to $1.25B in revenue for Intel in . This is a marque win for Intel and would go a long way to reducing the mobile business losses."
- At the same time, Richard is concerned Alibaba plans to deploy ARM-based (ARMH -3.3%) server CPUs developed by Cavium (CAVM -1.7%), and reports hearing Amazon, Facebook, and Google are working on their own ARM server CPU designs. Major Web/cloud service providers currently rely overwhelmingly on Intel server CPUs (primarily Xeon).
- Qualcomm (QCOM -0.9%) has been the iPhone's exclusive baseband modem supplier for some time, and also sells complementary RF transceiver, power management, receive-only, and envelope-tracking ICs to Apple. VentureBeat reported in March Apple plans to use Intel modems in 2016 iPhones aimed at emerging markets.
- Qualcomm suggested last month Apple's high-end smartphone share gains were partly responsible for its soft FQ4 (calendar Q3) guidance. However, this was generally seen as a reference to the fact Apple uses home-grown app processors (the A-series) within the iPhone rather than Qualcomm's Snapdragon line. The company has dominated the 4G modem market to date, and is generally seen as having a high-end performance/power consumption edge.
- Separately, Qualcomm has unveiled its next-gen GPU core architecture, the Adreno 5xx. Qualcomm promises up to 40% improvements in performance and power draw relative to the prior-gen Adreno 430. The first GPUs based on the architecture will go into the company's upcoming Snapdragon 820 (next-gen flagship) and 620/618 (mid-range) processors.
- Intel is up modestly in spite of a 1% Nasdaq drop. Qualcomm is following markets lower.
Wed, Jul. 22, 2:22 PM
- ARM (NASDAQ:ARMH) has slumped to its lowest levels since January after posting roughly in-line Q2 results and stating it expects 2015 results to match market expectations.
- Tech licensing revenue only rose 3% Y/Y in Q2, while royalty revenue (based on Q1 shipments) rose 30% to $175.9M on the back of a 26% Y/Y increase in ARM-based chip shipments to 3.4B. Annual chip shipment growth slowed a bit from Q1's 31%.
- A record 54 processor core licenses were inked, up from 30 in Q1 and 41 a year ago. 20 of the licenses were for low-power Cortex-M CPU cores (aimed at embedded/IoT devices), 15 were for the more powerful Cortex-A, 8 for the Cortex-R (used for real-time processing), and 9 for Mali GPU cores. 7 licenses were taken out for the 64-bit ARMv8-A architecture.
- Weighing on license sales growth: No costly architectural licenses were taken out. ARM still expects "medium-term" license growth of 5%-10%.
- Software/tool revenue rose 4% Y/Y to $13.7M, and services revenue 11% to $16.5M. Operating expenses rose 13% to £99.3M ($154.9M).
- Canaccord's Matt Ramsay remains bullish: He notes backlog rose 2% Q/Q, and predicts royalty growth will remain strong thanks to "much broader contributions from higher-royalty-rate ARMv8 and big.LITTLE mobile processors and share gains in Mali graphics."
- Apple and Linear Technology's calendar Q2 reports could be contributing to ARM's selloff - many chipmakers/ARM licensees are also posting steep losses.
- Q2 results, PR, earnings slides (.pdf)
Wed, Jul. 22, 6:06 AM
Wed, Jul. 22, 4:14 AM
- The chief executive of ARM (NASDAQ:ARMH), the chipmaker which saw a spike in its share price this year around Apple takeover rumors, has told CNBC that remaining independent is the "right thing" for his company.
- "There are rumors all the time about us being acquired. But when you look at our business model...it's much less expensive for them to license our technology than to buy the whole company." said Simon Segars.
- The announcement came as ARM reported Q2 results. Profits came in at £124M ($193M), up 31% Y/Y, but slightly below market expectations of £126M.
Tue, Jul. 21, 5:30 PM
Wed, Jul. 8, 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
Fri, Jun. 26, 10:26 AM
ARM Holdings PLC designs microprocessors, physical IP and related technology and software, and sells development tools to enhance the performance and energy-efficiency of high-volume embedded applications.
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