Aug. 28, 2014, 11:33 AM
- EZchip (NASDAQ:EZCH) has soared over the last 30 minutes of trading. Volume is already over 2x the daily average.
- A rumor that the network processor vendor has cancelled a Roth conference presentation (set for Sep. 3) could be playing a role. Shares have rallied on M&A hopes in the past - a long list of chipmakers have been acquired over the last 9 months.
Aug. 14, 2014, 12:40 PM
- Six firms have hiked their Cisco (CSCO -2.8%) targets after the company beat FQ4 estimates, issued mixed FQ1 guidance, and announced plans to cut another 6K jobs. But that isn't stopping shares from selling off due to worries about weak demand from carriers (orders -11% Y/Y) and emerging markets (orders -9%).
- "Notwithstanding the fact that capex will be fairly weak in [2H14], Cisco's [carrier] order performance in the first calendar half of 2014 demonstrates meaningful share loss in addition to soft carrier spending," says MKM (Neutral).
- Nonetheless, the firm thinks Cisco's total orders will rise at or near a low double-digit % in FQ1 (favorable comps will help). "We still believe it is profitable to own Cisco when orders and revenue growth are accelerating."
- Bulls are focusing on healthy enterprise orders and strong early uptake for the Nexus 9000/ACI SDN and networking virtualization platform. John Chambers mentioned on the CC (transcript) the platform's customer count more than tripled in FQ4 to 580+, and that there are over 60 customers for the related APIC software controller (just launched).
- Several peers and suppliers with strong carrier exposure are selling off. Cisco's numbers follow a soft outlook from JDS Uniphase, and coincide with light guidance from Oclaro. ALU -1.6%. JNPR -1.8%. FN -7.4%. ZHNE -2.1%. EZCH -3.8%.
- Prior Cisco earnings coverage
Aug. 13, 2014, 8:01 AM| Comment!
Aug. 12, 2014, 5:30 PM
Jul. 23, 2014, 12:25 PM
- Among the year's best tech performers, chip stocks are selling off (SOXX -1.8%) on an up day for the Nasdaq following weak numbers from FPGA giant Xilinx (XLNX -14.5%).
- Xilinx missed FQ1 revenue estimates by over $18M, and also guided for FQ2 revenue to be well below consensus. The company blamed the FQ1 shortfall on soft defense and wireless sales. BMO and BofA/Merrill have downgraded Xilinx; the former thinks Xilinx's 28nm share might be peaking.
- Xilinx stated on its CC (transcript) the wireless weakness was mostly due to soft 28nm chip sales to Chinese 4G base station vendors; Chinese 4G rollouts have long been viewed as a catalyst for both Xilinx and Altera (ALTR -4.7%). Aerospace/defense sales were hurt by program timing issues.
- Meanwhile, switch/router vendor Juniper offered light Q3 guidance to go with a Q2 beat. The company noted on its CC (transcript) "market dynamics" for U.S. carriers, including M&A activity, are affecting project rollouts.
- Also: Analog/mixed-signal IC vendor Linear (LLTC -4.1%) is selling off in spite of beating FQ4 estimates and guiding in-line (8%-11% Y/Y FQ1 rev. growth vs. 9.1% consensus).
- Notable decliners: FSL -5.3%. IDTI -6.4%. EZCH -3.3%. PMCS -4.3%. LSCC -6.8%. CAVM -4.7%. SMTC -4.1%. ATML -3.2%. TQNT -3.1%. RFMD -2.9%. IRF -2.9%.
- Qualcomm, NXP, TriQuint, and Cirrus Logic report after the bell.
- Chip ETFs: SMH, XSD, PSI, SOXL, USD, SOXS, SSG
Jul. 1, 2014, 10:03 AM
- EZchip (EZCH +1.6%) is paying $50M up-front, and up to $80M in performance earn-outs, to buy Tilera. The deal is expected to close in Q3.
- Tilera's network processors (NPUs) pack dozens of cores that can be programmed to handle tasks well-suited to parallel processing. The company launched a 72-core NPU (offered through a PCIe card) last year, and has been prepping a chip with over 100 cores.
- Whereas EZchip's NPUs are generally used in edge/access routers within carrier networks, Tilera's are often used in data center networking, security, and video appliances, and also act as co-processors within x86 servers. Tilera's rivals include Intel, Cavium, Broadcom, and Marvell.
- EZchip declares the deal doubles its addressable market to $2B, and adds 100+ customers. The purchase is expected to be slightly dilutive to 2014 EPS, and accretive to 2015 EPS.
- Tilera CEO Devesh Garg will become the head of EZchip's U.S. ops. EZchip predicts pairing its strengths with Tilera's will yield "new multi-core CPUs that uniquely integrate powerful networking capabilities with the highest number of processor cores addressing a wide range of applications and market segments."
Jun. 17, 2014, 9:55 AM
- Feltl has upgraded EZchip (EZCH +3.1%) to Strong Buy, and set a $31 PT.
- The network processor vendor's shares popped last month following a Q1 beat that was fueled by a 31% Y/Y increase in sales to top customer Cisco (boosted by strong ASR 9000 edge router demand), and a 172% increase in sales to #2 customer ZTE.
- SA author Darspal S. Mann recently argued Street estimates for 25% 2014 revenue growth may be conservative, given the potential for EZchip's next-gen NP5 processor (can handle 240Gbps) to start contributing in 2H. Mann notes the NP-5 has an ASP that's 60% higher than that of the prior-gen NP-4.
May. 14, 2014, 8:01 AM| Comment!
May. 13, 2014, 5:30 PM
Feb. 26, 2014, 4:12 PM
- Up moderately for much of the day as part of a broader rally in chip stocks, EZchip (EZCH +16%) blasted off in the final 30 minutes of trading on strong volume.
- No news has hit the wires to explain the move. EZchip has occasionally been a party to M&A speculation in the past; shares rallied in December after the Avago/LSI deal fueled hopes of further consolidation among networking chipmakers.
- Short-covering could be a factor: 13% of the float was shorted as of Jan. 31.
Feb. 12, 2014, 8:01 AM| Comment!
Feb. 12, 2014, 12:05 AM
Feb. 11, 2014, 5:30 PM
Dec. 17, 2013, 2:57 PM
- Avago (AVGO +7.6%) is now up 18% (good for a $2.1B increase in market cap) since announcing a $6.6B deal to acquire LSI yesterday morning. Many of its chip industry peers have also rallied; the Philadelphia Semiconductor Index (SOXX +1.2%) is up 2.5% over the last two days.
- The sharply contrasting nature of Avago and LSI's product lines - Avago depends heavily on RF and optical component sales, while LSI depends on storage controllers/adapters and network processors - could be fueling hopes other chipmakers will use M&A to expand their product lines and achieve greater scale.
- Today's notable gainers include EZchip (EZCH +6.7%), OmniVision (OVTI +3.6%), Skyworks (SWKS +3%), Cavium (CAVM +3%), Audience (ADNC +5.8%), Cirrus Logic (CRUS +3.4%), and Semtech (SMTC +3%). Cirrus and OmniVision, which both depend heavily on Apple orders, might also be getting a boost from a positive Q4 pre-announcement from Germany's Dialog Semi (gets ~70% of its sales from Apple).
- Several firms have hiked their Avago PTs in response to the LSI deal, which is set to be financed with $4.6B in debt and a $1B convertible note investment from Silver Lake (conversion price of just $48.04). Nomura expects the deal to lift Avago's 2015 EPS by $1.00-$1.50; Avago is promising $200M/year in synergies by the end of FY15 (ends Nov. '15). RBC thinks FY15 EPS of ~$5 is possible; the consensus is at $3.89.
- Chip ETFs: SMH, XSD, PSI, SOXL, USD, SOXS, SSG
Nov. 14, 2013, 10:13 AM
- The list of enterprise hardware/software, telecom equipment, and component/chip suppliers selling off (previous) due to Cisco's poor guidance and order data now includes Oracle (ORCL -2.4%), EZchip (EZCH -6.1%), Riverbed (RVBD -6%, shot higher yesterday on M&A hopes), NeoPhotonics (NPTN -6.6%), Ixia (XXIA -4.7%), Oclaro (OCLR -4%), Procera (PKT -2.3%), and Alliance Fiber (AFOP -3.8%).
- Cisco's weak service provider (-13% Y/Y) and emerging markets (-12%) orders are worrying investors in peers/suppliers, particularly given some peers (I, II) have also reported of soft carrier and/or EM demand. John Chambers' admission the NSA spying scandal has affected sales in China (orders -18%) also isn't going over well.
- However, many on the sell-side argue a big portion of Cisco's problems are tied to company-specific product issues.
- H-P (HPQ -5.6%), which has plenty of Chinese exposure, has added considerably to yesterday's AH losses, and so have Ciena (CIEN -5.3%) and Finisar (FNSR -10%). H-P's FQ4 report is due on Nov. 26, and Ciena's FQ4 report arrives on Dec. 12.
Nov. 13, 2013, 8:34 PM
- Cisco's (CSCO) dispiriting Jan. quarter guidance and Oct. quarter order data has produced an AH selloff in enterprise IT and telecom equipment names, as well as a couple of the companies supplying them. NetApp's below-consensus guidance might not be helping either.
- HPQ -2.1% AH. IBM -1.1%. ALU -2%. FFIV -1.9%. CIEN -0.9%. CAVM -3%. BRCM -1.3%.
- Cisco's slumping FQ1 service provider (-13% Y/Y) and emerging markets (-12%) orders are bound to fuel concerns about carrier capex and macro trends. At the same time, it's worth noting Juniper and Alcatel-Lucent have been seeing better router sales to carriers (though not to Asia), and that Huawei has been doing better in emerging markets.
- The rest of Cisco's order data for major regions and customer groups was relatively better, but not exactly encouraging. Americas orders -2%, EMEA -4%, Asia-Pac (hurt by emerging markets weakness) -9%. Enterprise orders +2%, commercial (SMBs) +1%, public sector -1%.
- Switch sales (31% of revenue) rose 3% Y/Y, while routers (17% of revenue) fell 1%. Collaboration rose 1%, and service provider video fell 14% due to set-top weakness. Cisco's ASR 9000 edge router line, which EZchip (EZCH) supplies network processors for, grew 20% in FQ1 vs. 43% in FQ4.
- Data center (UCS servers) had another strong quarter, growing 44%, but still only accounts for 5% of revenue. Wireless (dominated by Wi-Fi gear) grew only 8% after growing 32% in FQ4 (could be a negative for ARUN and RKUS).
- John Chambers was asked on the CC (transcript) if the NSA spying uproar was affecting Cisco. He admitted it's a problem in China, but denied it was a major issue elsewhere.
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