Thu, Oct. 29, 12:29 PM
- Down on Monday following Dialog Semi's Q3 report and up yesterday in the wake of Apple's results/guidance, chip stocks are selling off again (SOXX -2.5%) after leading microcontroller vendor NXP (NXPI -18.2%) posted mixed Q3 results and (more importantly) guided for Q4 revenue to be down by a "low to upper-teens" % Q/Q. The Nasdaq is down 0.3%.
- Also: 1) NXP rival and fellow European chipmaker STMicroelectronics (STM -5.8%) slightly missed Q3 revenue estimates and has guided for Q4 revenue to be down 6% (+/- 3.5%) Q/Q. 2) Network processor vendor Cavium (CAVM -5%) issued light Q4 guidance, while blaming a distribution model change at its biggest data center customer. 3) Microcontroller maker Atmel (ATML -2.4%, set to be acquired by Dialog) missed Q3 revenue estimates and guided for Q4 revenue of $266M-$286M, below a $296.1M consensus.
- On the bright side, Apple-dependent Cirrus Logic (CRUS -5.7%) beat FQ2 EPS estimates (revenue was in-line) and provided solid FQ3 guidance, and fellow Apple/Samsung supplier InvenSense (INVN +14.3%) beat FQ2 estimates and issued in-line FQ3 guidance. Cirrus is nonetheless selling off; the earnings call (transcript) was generally upbeat, with management talking up FY16/FY17 growth opportunities related to smart codec and boosted amplifier sales.
- NXP merger partner Freescale (FSL -15.4%) is naturally seeing big losses. Other decliners include RF chipmakers Skyworks (SWKS -3.1%), Avago (AVGO -6%), and Qorvo (QRVO -2.6%), analog/mixed-signal chipmakers Texas Instruments (TXN -3%), ON Semi (ON -5.9%), MagnaChip (MX -6.8%), Fairchild (FCS -4.3%), Maxim (MXIM -3.1%), and IDT (IDTI -5.2%), and smart TV SoC vendor/STMicro rival Sigma Designs (SIGM -3.2%).
- Like NXP, Cirrus, and InvenSense, Skyworks, Avago, Qorvo, TI, and Fairchild are Apple suppliers. Fairchild and Maxim have recently benefited from M&A reports (I, II).
- Both NXP and STMicro reported seeing conditions deteriorate as Q3 progressed. NXP added lower-than-expected chip sell-through led to higher channel inventories, and STMicro stated "lower consumer spending in China is impacting the dynamics of the distribution channel in the region and the industry more globally, particularly in automotive." NXP has added 20M shares to its buyback in an attempt to soften the blow.
- Chip ETFs: SMH, XSD, PSI, SOXL, USD, SOXS, SSG
Tue, Oct. 6, 12:57 PM
- Skyworks (NASDAQ:SWKS) has tumbled towards $75 after announcing it's buying storage and telecom IC vendor PMC-Sierra (NASDAQ:PMCS) for $2B in cash on hand. (PR)
- Fellow RF chipmaker Avago (AVGO -6.7%), which (thanks to the LSI acquisition) competes against PMC-Sierra in the storage controller market, is also off, as is merger partner Broadcom (BRCM -3.2%), which competes against PMC to an extent in the telecom IC and network processor markets. RF peer Qorvo (QRVO -3.3%) is also getting hit. The Nasdaq is down 1.2%.
- Possibly hurting the group: Skyworks has used the PMC deal to announce it expects FQ4 (calendar Q3) revenue of $880M and EPS of $1.52. That's slightly above prior guidance of $875M and $1.51 and a consensus of $876M and $1.51, but expectations have been high following a long string of beat-and-raise quarters.
- The PMC acquisition expands Skyworks' reach to a slew of non-RF chip markets and enterprise/telecom infrastructure end-markets. It's expected to yield $75M in cost synergies within 12 months of closing (expected in 1H16), and subsequently boost Skyworks' annual EPS by $0.75. Assuming that target is hit, Skyworks is paying 14x forward EPS.
- Update (1:04PM ET): BofA/Merrill is defending Skyworks and Avago, arguing forward P/Es of less than 10 make shares very cheap.
- Update 2 (5:01PM ET): The group staged a comeback in afternoon trading. Skyworks closed down 1.4%, Avago 3.4%, Qorvo 1.1%, and Broadcom 1.6%. The Nasdaq closed down 0.7%.
Tue, Sep. 8, 3:25 PM
- The Philadelphia Semi Index (SOXX +3.9%) has risen to its highest levels since mid-August on a day the Nasdaq is posting a 2.3% gain.
- Likely helping out: Microchip (MCHP +8.4%), still often seen as an industry bellwether (though its commentary accompanying last fall's warning sparked criticism), has adjusted its FQ2 (calendar Q3) revenue and EPS guidance to $545M-$563M ($554M midpoint) and $0.60-$0.66 from a prior $$532M-$569M ($550.5M midpoint) and $0.58-$0.66. The outlook comes after many chipmakers (Microchip included) offered below-consensus calendar Q3 guidance amid an inventory correction, weak PC demand, and slowing Chinese smartphone growth.
- Microchip's core ops are said to be tracking in-line with prior expectations, and recently-acquired Micrel's above expectations. The 8.6M shares issued in the Micrel deal have been repurchased.
- Also: Various Taiwanese chipmakers and supply chain firms have reported August sales. Chip packaging/testing firms ASE (ASX +5.9%) and Siliconware (SPIL +4.1%) respectively reported sales were up 5.8% and 5.7% M/M, and up 9.5% and down 4.2% Y/Y.
- Big gainers include Microchip peers NXP (NXPI +6.8%), Freescale (FSL +5.8%), Silicon Labs (SLAB +4.4%), and Cypress (CY +4.4%). Others include Avago (AVGO +5.8%), Xilinx (XLNX +5.7%), Cavium (CAVM +5.5%), Analog Devices (ADI +6.3%), Synaptics (SYNA +5.4%), Linear (LLTC +4.6%), Cirrus Logic (CRUS +4.7%), IDT (IDTI +4.6%), Sigma Designs (SIGM +4.9%), and chip equipment maker Axcelis (ACLS +8%).
- SanDisk, ON Semi, and Silicon Motion are benefiting from upgrades/bullish coverage. Apple holds its iPhone event at 1PM ET tomorrow.
- Chip ETFs: SMH, XSD, PSI, SOXL, USD, SOXS, SSG
Wed, Aug. 26, 4:44 PM
- Avago (NASDAQ:AVGO) has guided for FQ4 revenue of $1.85B (+/- $25M), slightly below a $1.86B consensus at the midpoint. However, expectations were relatively low, given the soft guidance many chipmakers have provided in July/August.
- Segment performance: FQ3 wireless communications revenue (RF components, boosted by iPhone growth and 4G-driven share gains) rose 7% Q/Q and 69% Y/Y, and made up 35% of revenue. Enterprise storage (boosted by the Emulex acquisition) rose 26% Q/Q and 46% Y/Y, and was 34% of revenue. Wired infrastructure fell 3% Q/Q and rose 7% Y/Y, and was 21% of revenue. Industrial/other fell 21% Q/Q and rose 2% Y/Y, and was 10% of revenue.
- Financials: Gross margin was 61%, flat Q/Q and up 400 bps, and above a guidance midpoint of 60%. FQ4 GM guidance is at 60.5% (+/- 1%). M&A-related cost cuts resulted in operating expenses rising only 7% Y/Y to $330M. Avago ended FQ3 with $1.4B in cash, and $3.9B in debt.
- Avago is up 2% after hours to $118.35. Shares rose 7.1% in regular trading ahead of earnings amid a giant market rally. Merger partner Broadcom (NASDAQ:BRCM) rose 5.6%.
- FQ3 results, PR
Wed, Aug. 26, 4:03 PM
Tue, Aug. 25, 5:35 PM
Thu, Jul. 30, 6:33 PM
- On top of missing Q2 estimates, Broadcom (NASDAQ:BRCM) has guided for Q3 revenue of $2.135B (+/- $75M), below a $2.24B consensus. But with many other chipmakers having already issued soft Q3 outlooks, and Broadcom's shares now effectively linked to Avago's, the numbers are being taken in stride.
- Q2 gross margin was 56.6%, +220 bps Q/Q and +170 bps Y/Y, and above a guidance midpoint of 56%. Q3 is expected to drop to 55.3% (+/- 75 bps) in Q3. R&D spend fell 15% Y/Y to $538M thanks to Broadcom's baseband modem exit, while SG&A spend rose 3% to $188M. $128M was spent on buybacks.
- Separately, the WSJ reports the IRS has declined to promise the stock portion of Avago's (NASDAQ:AVGO) pending $37B deal to merge with Broadcom will be a tax-free transaction for Broadcom shareholders. However, if Avago ($35B market cap) remains larger than Broadcom ($31B market cap), the stock portion will be tax-free. Either way, Broadcom shareholders will owe taxes on the deal's $17B cash payout.
- Should the stock portion of the deal be taxable, Avago plans to offer Broadcom investors tax-deferring units instead of stock. That would let investors decide when to make tax payments.
- BRCM +0.6% AH. AVGO -0.9%.
- Broadcom's Q2 results, PR
Wed, Jul. 29, 4:33 PM
- Skyworks (NASDAQ:SWKS) and Avago (NASDAQ:AVGO) have sold off in AH trading after rival Qorvo (down 15.2%) provided soft FQ2 (calendar Q3) guidance to go with an FQ1 beat.
- Qorvo didn't give an explanation (Apple/Samsung share loss? Soft Chinese demand?) in its earnings release for the outlook. The numbers come 6 days after Skyworks provided above-consensus FQ4 guidance to go with an FQ3 beat. Avago is expected to report in August.
- Update: On its earnings call, Qorvo stated demand from Chinese phone OEMs has softened, and that some are carrying excess inventory. The company also joined other chipmakers in mentioning Chinese 4G base station demand is weak. Skyworks closed down 2.7% AH, and Avago down 3.3%.
Thu, May 28, 1:34 PM
- In a presentation (.pdf) discussing their planned merger, Avago (AVGO -0.4%) and Broadcom (BRCM -2.6%) state they're aiming for a 40% long-term op. margin, up from the 30% collectively possessed by the companies today. Gross margin is forecast to rise to 60% from a current 57%, and R&D and SG&A spend respectively fall to 16% and 4% of revenue from 20% and 7%.
- Avago and Broadcom, who have $15.1B in revenue between them, are only forecasting a 5% long-term revenue CAGR. However, Avago CEO Hock Tan states the outlook is "probably conservative."
- Avago plans to partly finance the $17B cash portion of the deal via $9B worth of new debt. The post-merger company is expected to have $15.5B in debt and $1.3B in cash; Broadcom shareholders will have a 32% stake. The deal is expected to close in Q1 2016.
- Many potential product synergies exist. Among the possibilities: Wi-Fi/Bluetooth solutions that pair Broadcom's combo chips with Avago RF components; server/storage connectivity product lines featuring a mixture of Broadcom's Ethernet transceivers and switching chips and Avago's adapter cards and optical transceivers - Stifel thinks Mellanox (MLNX -0.3%) could be at risk here - and telecom equipment product lines that combine Broadcom's network processors and switching chips with Avago's optical components.
- Meanwhile, in its FQ2 report (issued in tandem with the merger announcement), Avago has guided for FQ3 revenue of $1.74B (+/- $25M), above a $1.68B consensus. The company reported a 66% Y/Y increase in FQ2 wireless chip revenue (aided by strong Apple/Samsung demand), along with 74% and 64% increases in wired infrastructure and industrial/other revenue (lifted by both organic growth and M&A).
Thu, May 28, 7:03 AM
Wed, May 27, 5:35 PM
Thu, May 7, 11:13 AM
- Just as Qorvo (QRVO +9%) and Avago (AVGO +5.1%) rallied in response to Skyworks' (SWKS +2.1%) beat-and-raise FQ2 report last week, Skyworks and Avago are rallying today after Qorvo beat FQ4 estimates with the help of strong iPhone 6-related sales, and offered above-consensus FQ1 guidance.
- Needham's Quinn Bolton has upgraded Qorvo to Buy, and set an $88 target. Bolton: "Management expects continued robust revenue growth in C2H15 as it has high visibility into the major Tier 1 OEM platform launches later this year. Additionally, QRVO expects continued 4G adoption in the emerging markets to drive strong growth in F1Q16 and C2H15, echoing recent peer commentary."
- He also notes Qorvo now expects to exceed prior RF Micro/TriQuint merger synergy targets, and that its 2H15 gross margin and op. margin could respectively top targets of 50% and 30%. "We believe QRVO's valuation multiple has yet to reflect the greater than expected synergies, revenue growth and operating leverage."
- Qorvo is now aiming for more than $150M/year in synergies by the end of 2016. Major FQ4 design wins included a diversity switch module for a flagship Android phone set to launch in 2H15, and power amplifier wins for major base station and an 802.11ac Wi-Fi chipset. The company asserts the merger is helping it develop integrated RF front-end solutions combining amplifiers, filters, and diversity modules.
Fri, May 1, 12:12 PM
- A slew of firms have hiked their Skyworks (SWKS +6%) targets after the company beat FQ2 estimates with the help of strong iPhone 6/Galaxy S6-related demand, and (in contrast to many chip industry peers) provided above-consensus FQ3 guidance. Peers Qorvo (QRVO +4.5%) and Avago (AVGO +4.1%) are following Skyworks higher.
- Pac Crest's John Vinh ($110 target): "SWKS confirmed that its SkyOne Ultra front-end module has been designed into Samsung’s GS6. We believe the company’s content increased by $1 in the GS6 vs. the GS5 ... we believe this helped more than offset weakness in the China smartphone market, which was down in CQ1. SWKS still sees a strong ramp of 4G smartphones in China and estimates units growing from 100 million in 2014 to the range of 225 million to 250 million in 2015."
- Raymond James' Steven Smigle ($117 target) notes the SkyOne Mini 2G/3G/4G front-end module line (aimed at cheaper phones) has a number of Chinese design wins, and expects Chinese phone demand to rebound in 2H15. "Total sales for filters sound more bullish compared to last quarter with management believing they will exceed their goal of selling 1 billion TC-SAW filters in 2015 ... The Broad Markets segment also sounds positive with new design wins in various automotive and WiFi connectivity solutions."
- B. Riley's Craig Ellis ($120 target): "[N]ew integrated products such as diversity receive modules are poised to compliment the now-ramping SkyOne Ultra, Panasonic JV ops integration and optimization remains in early-innings, and the ability to price for value gets steadily better as the portfolio increasingly migrates to Integrated or Broad Market products which are now 69.0% of sales."
- Qorvo reports on May 6. Avago typically reports later in May.
Fri, Apr. 24, 2:03 PM
- Though the Nasdaq is up 0.7% thanks to market-pleasing earnings from Google, Microsoft, and Amazon, chip stocks (SOXX -2.1%) are adding to their Thursday losses after Freescale, Altera, Microsemi, and Maxim joined the ranks of chipmakers offering soft Q2 guidance; Texas Instruments, Xilinx, and Qualcomm did so on Wednesday afternoon.
- NXP (NXPI -4.3%), set to merge with Freescale in a cash/stock deal, is selling off ahead of its April 29 Q1 report. RF chipmakers Skyworks (SWKS -3.8%), Qorvo (QRVO -4.4%), and Avago (AVGO -5.2%) are also seeing steep declines.
- Other decliners include a slew of telecom/networking, microcontroller, and analog/mixed-signal chipmakers. The group includes Marvell (MRVL -3%), ON Semi (ON -6.9%), Atmel (ATML -3.3%), Cypress (CY -4%), Lattice (LSCC -3.9%), Semtech (SMTC -6.9%), Cavium (CAVM -6%), PMC-Sierra (PMCS -2.9%), InPhi (IPHI -3.8%), and Silicon Labs (SLAB -2.9%). Chip packaging/testing firm Amkor (AMKR -5.7%) is also off; its Q1 report arrives on Monday.
- As was the case with TI and Xilinx, soft telecom equipment chip demand was often blamed by those guiding light yesterday afternoon. Freescale (FSL -3.5%) stated it expects network processor division sales to be down Q/Q and RF (base station power amplifier) division sales to be flat. Microcontroller, automotive, and analog and sensor division sales are expected to rise.
- Altera (ALTR -3.3%) stated its "telecom and wireless business, and particularly our wireless business globally looks to be quite weak in [Q2], while the rest for our business will in aggregate be flat to slightly up." Regarding its Q1 miss, the company notes "Industrial, test, compute and storage, and to a lesser extent military, fell short of our forecast" (share loss to Xilinx?).
- Maxim reports seeing "broad-based softness in communications infrastructure demand" and soft industrial bookings to go with healthier mobile/auto demand. The Galaxy S6 appears to be giving a lift to Maxim's mobile sales.
- Chip ETFs: SMH, XSD, PSI, SOXL, USD, SOXS, SSG
Wed, Feb. 25, 6:19 PM
- In addition to beating FQ1 EPS estimates (while posting in-line revenue), Avago (NASDAQ:AVGO) is guiding for FQ2 revenue to be down 3% to up 1% Q/Q. That implies a range of $1.59B-$1.65B, above a $1.54B consensus.
- Driving the FQ1 EPS beat: Gross margin was 59%, up from FQ4's 58% and the year-ago period's 52%, and above guidance of 57.5% (+/- 1%). FQ2 GM guidance is at 58.5% (+/- 1%).
- Also helping EPS: Operating expenses totaled $293M, up from $142M a year ago thanks to acquisitions, but down from $303M in FQ4 thanks to cost cuts.
- As expected, strong iPhone-related sales acted as a big FQ1 tailwind: Wireless product sales (40% of total revenue) rose 6% Q/Q and 90% Y/Y. Wired infrastructure (21% of total revenue, boosted by the PLX and LSI acquisitions) fell 1% Q/Q and rose 52% Y/Y. Enterprise storage (29% of revenue, a product of the LSI acquisition) rose 5% Q/Q. Industrial/other (10% of revenue) fell 4% Q/Q and rose 21% Y/Y.
- Avago has risen to $119.03 AH, making new highs in the process. RF component rivals are ticking higher: Skyworks (NASDAQ:SWKS) +0.9% to $88.49. Qorvo (NASDAQ:QRVO) +1.1% to $67.92.
- Avago's FQ1 results, Emulex acquisition, PR
Wed, Feb. 25, 4:13 PM
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