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EZchip Semiconductor Limited (EZCH)

  • Sep. 24, 2013, 12:24 PM
    • At a launch event for its new NCS core router line, Cisco (CSCO -0.5%) states its recently-announced nPower X1 network processor (NPU) won't displace EZchip's (EZCH +17.1%) NPUs.
    • EZchip shares, which tumbled when the X1 was originally announced, have shot higher. Oppenheimer had estimated the nPower X1 could hurt EZchip's top line by 20%-25% if used in future Cisco edge routers; the chipmaker issued a statement attempting to soothe investor fears.
    • Cisco states the X1, which (per John Chambers) cost $250M to develop, will power the NCS line, as well as its mainstay CRS-X core routers.
    • As previously reported, the NCS line is meant to provide better support for diverse traffic loads than the CRS-X line. Cisco touts the programmability of its new hardware, as well as its advanced management tools (both physical and virtual resources can be provisioned across systems) and support for the company's ONE SDN platform (will eventually cover Cisco's entire switch/router lineup).
    • The high-end NCS 6000 supports line cards with densities up to 1Tbps; that exceeds the 400Gbps supported by the CRS-X and supports arguments the former will be viewed as a replacement for the latter, even if it isn't officially marketed as such.
    • The NCS 6000 is already shipping, as is a complementary 100G optical transport system known as the NCS 2000. Japan's KDDI and Australia's Telstra are among the first clients. A less powerful router known as the NCS 4000 will ship in 1H14.
    • Juniper (JNPR -1.2%), whose successful PTX Series routers are being targeted by the NCS line, is ticking lower.
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  • Sep. 17, 2013, 9:32 AM
    • "To the best of EZchip's (EZCH +7.5%) knowledge Cisco intends to use EZchip's NP-5 in all key platforms that use the NP-4 today, and Cisco has not yet made a decision on any NPU beyond NP-5 in those platforms." Those comments are in-line with a remark CEO Eli Fruchter made to Benchmark in the wake of Cisco's nPower X1 announcement. (PR)
    • EZchip also once more talks up the potential of its NPS-400 processor (previous), declaring it will offer "the highest integration and greatest power efficiency," of any NPU, as well as the most advanced traffic manager and the ability to "support the greatest number of flows and subscribers." The NPS-400 is expected to start generating revenue in 2015.
    • Regarding ZTE, the company doesn't specifically deny Maxim's report of a Broadcom design win, but does state ZTE plans to use the NP-5 "as a follow on" in platforms using the NP-3 and NP-4 to the best of its knowledge, and that the NP-5 "is also in consideration for other [ZTE] platforms as are other NPUs from other vendors."
    • Shares still -23% from where they traded before Cisco's announcement.
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  • Sep. 16, 2013, 1:16 PM
    • Maxim's Ashok Kumar reports ZTE will use a Broadcom (BRCM +2.9%) network processor (NPU) in upcoming edge routers, displacing traditional ZTE supplier EZchip (EZCH -6.6%). While EZchip slumps thanks to Maxim's note and an Oppenheimer downgrade, Broadcom is heading in the opposite direction.
    • In its Q2 CC, EZchip stated its sales to ZTE fell 21% Q/Q and 54% Y/Y to $1.7M. However, that was still good for 10% of the chipmaker's Q2 sales. CEO Eli Fruchter added his company "[continues] to see a lot of activity at ZTE," and predicted EZchip's sales to the Chinese networking firm would be up significantly Y/Y in 2013.
    • Broadcom's NetLogic unit (recently the subject of a $461M write-down) announced its XLP980 NPU this June to favorable commentary. The chip leverages TSMC's 28nm manufacturing process and delivers 160Gbps of throughput. EZchip's NP-4 chip offers 100Gbps of throughput, and the next-gen NP-5 240Gbps.
    • Prior to the XLP980 announcement, SA contributors Value Bulldog and Kerrisdale Capital were already arguing Broadcom's NPU efforts threatened EZchip.
    • Discussing its EZchip downgrade, Oppenheimer predicts EZchip's Juniper sales will fall 52%, offsetting a 36% increase in sales to Cisco and a 15% increase for everyone else. It also thinks EZchip's profits could be hurt by 20%-25% if Cisco uses the nPower X1 in future edge routers.
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  • Sep. 16, 2013, 12:46 PM
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  • Sep. 16, 2013, 9:45 AM
    • American Tower (AMT +1.6%) has been upgraded to Buy by Nomura 10 days after the company announced its $4.8B purchase of Global Tower Partners. Nomura apparently has a different view of the cell tower owner than Muddy Waters.
    • EZchip (EZCH -1.1%) has been cut to Market Perform by Oppenheimer four days after Cisco unveiled its nPower X1 network processor.
    • Gigamon (GIMO -3.3%) has been cut to Market Perform by Raymond James.
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  • Sep. 12, 2013, 12:45 PM
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  • Sep. 12, 2013, 10:38 AM
    • Cisco (CSCO +0.2%) asserts its nPower X1 network processor (NPU) delivers 400Gbps of throughput (matching ALU's oft-praised FP3), and was "purpose-built" for software-defined networking (an unmatched level of programmability is promised). (PR)
    • EZchip (EZCH -22.4%) investors aren't taking the news well. Cisco is the NPU developer's top client, and strong sales of Cisco's ASR 9000 edge router (uses EZchip's NP-3/NP-4 processors) have done wonders for EZchip's top line. Cisco's announcement raises the possibility the X1 will be used in the ASR 9000's successor.
    • EZchip disclosed on its Q2 CC Cisco accounted for 46% of its quarterly revenue. Sales to the networking giant rose 55% Q/Q and 33% Y/Y, and were forecast to "grow significantly" Y/Y in 2013.
    • Benchmark is defending EZchip after talking with CEO Eli Fruchter. Fruchter: "To the best of our knowledge, Cisco will use the [240Gbps] NP-5 in all key platforms that use the NP-4 today."
    • While many rivals increasingly rely on 3rd-party NPUs (from EZchip, Broadcom, Cavium, etc) Cisco continues to invest heavily in developing proprietary ASICs to differentiate certain switch/router lines.
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  • Sep. 6, 2013, 9:23 AM
    • In a coverage launch for Internet stocks, Barclays has started Zillow (Z), YELP, and Shutterfly (SFLY) at Overweight, Zynga (ZNGA), OpenTable (OPEN), HomeAway (AWAY,), and InterActiveCorp (IACI) at Equal Weight, and Vistaprint (VPRT) at Underweight. Z +1%. YELP +4.1% to new post-IPO highs. Deutsche started coverage on Yelp at Buy after the close yesterday.
    • Canaccord has started Splunk (SPLK), Datawatch (DWCH), and ServiceNow (NOW) at Buy.
    • EZchip (EZCH) has been upgraded to Buy by Chardan Capital.
    • VeriFone (PAY) has been upgraded to Outperform by Wedbush following its FQ3 beat and solid FQ4 guidance. PAY +7.3%.
    • T-Mobile USA (TMUS) has been upgraded to Outperform by William Blair. TMUS +0.9%.
    • InterXion (INXN) has been cut to Market Perform by Oppenheimer.
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  • Aug. 15, 2013, 6:16 PM
    • H-P (HPQ -4.5%) fell sharply today thanks to Cisco's (CSCO -7.1%) light guidance and order data, and perhaps also some of the specific factors that went into the numbers.
    • But shares are up 0.5% AH in response to Dell's revenue beat. The fellow IT giant reported a 5% Y/Y drop in PC division sales, and 8% growth in enterprise hardware sales.
    • Cisco, which fiercely competes with H-P in the server and Ethernet switch markets, mentioned on its CC enterprise orders fell 2% Y/Y in FQ4, thanks to a 10% EMEA drop. SMB (+5%), public sector (+6%), and carrier (+6%) orders were healthier.
    • Also, though Cisco's U.S. (+5%) and EMEA (+6%) orders were solid, Asia-Pac orders fell 3% Y/Y. H-P's Asia-Pac sales fell 12% Y/Y in the April quarter.
    • Cisco's data center revenue rose 43% Y/Y thanks to continued share gains for its UCS servers, but that represented a slowdown from FQ3's +77%. Switching revenue +5% Y/Y, thanks to 20% growth for the Nexus data center switch line. Routing was flat in spite of 69% growth for the ASR 9000 edge router line (good for EZCH).
    • Cisco Wi-Fi hardware rivals Aruba (ARUN -0.2%) and Ruckus (RKUS -0.4%) outperformed the Nasdaq. Cisco reported 32% Y/Y Wi-Fi hardware growth, a pickup from FQ3's +27%.
    • More on Cisco
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  • Aug. 7, 2013, 8:06 AM
    • EZchip (EZCH): Q2 EPS of $0.29 beats by $0.01.
    • Revenue of $16.7M (+5% Y/Y) beats by $0.13M. (PR)
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  • Aug. 7, 2013, 12:05 AM
  • Aug. 6, 2013, 5:30 PM
  • Jul. 24, 2013, 11:45 AM
    EZchip (EZCH +4.6%) rallies after Chardan Capital upgrades shares to Buy. The firm is encouraged by Juniper's (JNPR +1.1%) Q2 CC remarks about strong edge router/carrier Ethernet demand. Juniper: "What we're seeing now on the Edge is it's now building out new capacity to handle what was networks that were running hotter and hotter. And we think that, that trend is going to continue for several quarters ... and we're just now starting to see the signs that investment will ... start to kick in for the core." Juniper only makes up 13% of EZchip's sales, but Chardan thinks Cisco (32% of sales) and ZTE (27%) could be seeing similar trends. EZchip's Q2 results arrive on Aug. 7.
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  • Jun. 12, 2013, 1:46 PM
    Broadcom (BRCM -1.6%) tries to grab a bigger piece of the high-margin network processor (NPU) market by launching its XLP980 chip. Broadcom claims the XLP980, which leverages NetLogic and TSMC's 28nm process, can deliver 160 Gbps of throughput. The Linley Group's Bob Wheeler calls the XLP980 "a beast," and notes it has a head-start on a pending chip for Cavium's (CAVM) OCTEON III line, but cautions it could be limited to high-end applications. Broadcom (BRCM) also competes with EZchip (EZCH) in the NPU space. EZchip's NP-4 processor offers 100 Gbps of throughput; the NP-5 (due in 2014) reaches 240 Gbps. (PR)
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  • May 16, 2013, 9:15 AM
    A few Cisco rivals and suppliers are up premarket after the networking giant beat estimates while reporting strong data center switch/server sales and service provider orders (albeit while cautioning the SP capex environment remains tough). Some others might move higher following the open. JNPR +3.6%. FFIV +3.2%. CIEN +3.9%. EZCH +1.2% - Cisco mentioned on its earnings call sales of its ASR 9000 edge routers, which EZchip supplies network processors for, were up 40%+ Y/Y.
  • May 13, 2013, 11:06 AM
    A downgrade to Equalweight from Barclays leads EZchip (EZCH -1.4%) to slide a bit. Shares took off last Thursday after the network processor vendor delivered roughly in-line Q1 results, but provided an upbeat earnings call. CEO Eli Fruchter stated sales to Juniper, which have been slumping for some time, grew 27% Q/Q and could rise Y/Y in 2013. Moreover, Ericsson, Tellabs, and Huawei have begun placing production orders for EZchip's NP-4 processor (Huawei has been a concern), and that while sales to top customer Cisco (32% of revenue) fell 30% Y/Y in Q1 due to "lumpiness," they're still expected to grow significantly Y/Y in 2013.
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Company Description
EZChip Semiconductor Ltd is engaged in the development & marketing of Internet application solutions to improve the connectivity & performance of corporate LAN & WAN.