Apr. 10, 2014, 4:01 PM
- Following a two-day rebound, high-beta tech stocks are seeing monumental losses once again. The Nasdaq is closing with its biggest one-day decline since 2011 (eclipsing last week's 110-point drop).
- Security hardware/software providers were hard-hit following Imperva's (IMPV -43.8%) big warning: FEYE -11.6%. PANW -6.4%. PFPT -9.8%. FFIV -4.7%. KEYW -6.5%. FTNT -6.9%. QLYS -10.4%.
- Other high-beta enterprise names didn't fare much better: DATA -10%. SPLK -10.3%. WDAY -9.3%. VRNS -8%. EOPN -7.9%. FIO -7.6%. BLOX -9.7%.
- Major Internet decliners: P -11%. YELP -10.6%. ZNGA -6.6%. YY -7.3%. QIHU -9.3%. SINA -6.6%.
- Solar: TSL -10.4%. CSIQ -10.4%. JKS -7.9%. SPWR -7.4%. JASO -6.8%. CSUN -8.2%.
- 3D printing: DDD -10.6%. VJET -13.3%. ONVO -8.1%. XONE -7.7%. SSYS -6.7%.
Apr. 2, 2014, 5:57 PM
- Juniper's (JNPR) job cut disclosure comes five weeks after new CEO Shaygan Kheradpar unveiled (with Elliott Management's blessing) an "Integrated Operating Plan" that calls for $160M/year in opex savings by Q1 2015, and a 580 bps improvement in op. margin from 2013 to 2015.
- Juniper, which has ~9.5K employees, expects to record $35M worth of charges in Q1. The company also expects to record $70M worth of charges (starting in Q2) related to plans to dispose of 300K sq. feet of leased facilities, and $20M worth of other charges later this year.
- Product development related to the application delivery controller (ADC) technology Juniper licensed from Riverbed (RVBD) for $75M in 2012 is coming to an end. Juniper expects to record an $85M Q1 non-cash charge related to the move.
- Juniper's decision removes one more potential rival for ADC leader F5 (FFIV). Cisco largely exited the ADC market in 2012 in favor of a partnership with Citrix.
- JNPR -0.6% AH.
Feb. 10, 2014, 9:51 AM
- F5 (FFIV +1.1%) has been started at Buy by Dougherty & Co. The company beat FQ1 estimates and issued strong guidance last month.
- FireEye (FEYE +3.7%) has been started at Outperform by Wells Fargo. Q4 results arrive tomorrow.
- Maxim (MXIM +1.9%) has been upgraded to Strong Buy by Raymond James.
- CommVault (CVLT +0.6%) has been upgraded to Outperform by JMP. Shares tanked two weeks ago due to the cautious CC remarks provided with an FQ3 beat.
- Ingram Micro (IM +1.8%) has been upgraded to Buy by Brean.
- CalAmp (CAMP +2.2%) has been started at Strong Buy by Midtown Partners.
Feb. 4, 2014, 1:32 PM
- A day after Wells Fargo upgraded Palo Alto Networks (PANW +5%) to Outperform, Pac Crest has hiked its PT to $75 from $65, while reiterating an Outperform.
- The note, which comes 20 days before Palo Alto's FQ2 report, has helped shares move back above $60. They also rallied in December in response to an upbeat Pac Crest note.
- Separately, Palo Alto and Citrix (CTXS +1.1%) have announced an expansion of their security/networking partnership (previous). Citrix's NetScaler SDX application delivery controllers (ADCs - they analyze Web traffic at the application level and direct it to/from servers) will now support "virtual" instances of Palo Alto's next-gen firewalls.
- The companies note different instances of Palo Alto's virtual firewall products, known as the VM-Series, can be tailored to the needs of different apps when placed within a Citrix ADC. The firewalls still leverage Palo Alto's proprietary PAN-OS operating system.
- The partnership is aimed in part at F5 (FFIV +1.4%). F5 has launched firewall and app security modules for its market-leading ADCs, and is attempting to grab security share from incumbents with the help of its full-proxy architecture.
Jan. 23, 2014, 9:12 AM| Jan. 23, 2014, 9:12 AM | Comment!
Jan. 22, 2014, 5:45 PM
Jan. 22, 2014, 5:34 PM
- Along with its FQ1 results and FQ2 guidance, F5 (FFIV) announces it's adding $500M to its buyback plan. That raises the company's total available authorization to $781.3M, good for repurchasing 7% of outstanding shares at current levels.
- As of Dec. 31, F5 had $578M in cash/equivalents to fund buybacks with.
- Shares now +11.8% AH, making new 52-week highs in the process.
Jan. 22, 2014, 4:48 PM
- In addition to handily beating FQ1 estimates, F5 (FFIV) is guiding for FQ2 revenue of $408M-$418M and EPS of $1.23-$1.26, above a consensus of $404.1M and $1.21.
- FQ1 product revenue +7% Y/Y to $218.6M, after growing just 1% in FQ4. A mid-2013 refresh for F5's application delivery controller lineup likely helped, and so might have licensing policy changes. Services revenue +17% to $187.9M.
- F5 continues to invest aggressively: Sales/marketing spend +10% Y/Y to $134.8M, R&D +32% to $64.1M. Headcount rose by 165 during FQ1.
- Shares are close to their 52-week high of $107.99.
- CC underway. FQ1 results, PR.
Jan. 22, 2014, 4:25 PM
Jan. 22, 2014, 12:10 AM
Jan. 21, 2014, 5:35 PM
Jan. 13, 2014, 9:56 AM
- H-P (HPQ +3.7%) and Teradata (TDC +1.8%) have been started at Overweight by Atlantic Securities.
- BlackBerry (BBRY -6.2%) has been cut to Underperform by Oppenheimer following a major rally over the last four weeks. RBC upgraded shares last Friday.
- F5 (FFIV +3.7%) has been upgraded to Outperform by William Blair.
- Qihoo (QIHU +4.3%) has been upgraded to Buy by Stifel, and started at Buy by UBS. Shares fell last Thursday following a report questioning the size of the company's search share gains, and rose the day before thanks to an Alibaba investment rumor.
- Cree (CREE -6.6%) has been cut to Hold by Stifel.
- Autodesk (ADSK +1.8%) has been upgraded to Overweight by Morgan Stanley.
- Skyworks (SWKS +4.7%) has been upgraded to Buy by B. Riley.
- Red Hat (RHT +4.4%) has been upgraded to Overweight by Morgan Stanley.
- Fortinet (FTNT +2.1%) has been upgraded to Overweight by Morgan Stanley.
- HomeAway (AWAY +2%) has been upgraded to Overweight by Barclays.
- Garmin (GRMN +1.1%) has been upgraded to Outperform by Oppenheimer.
- Nimble Storage (NMBL +2.2%) has been upgraded to Outperform by Pac Crest. The firm started Nimble and Sector Perform just six days ago.
- Peregrine Semi (PSMI -9.1%) has been cut to Hold by Deutsche.
- Sanmina (SANM -7%) has been cut to Underperform by Raymond James.
- Symantec (SYMC -2.3%) has been cut to Underweight by Morgan Stanley.
- NCR (NCR +2.2%) has been started at Overweight by JPMorgan, and added to the firm's Focus List.
- Vipshop (VIPS +1.8%) has been started at Buy by UBS.
- Parametric Sound (PAMT +4.5%) has been started at Strong Buy by Needham.
Dec. 30, 2013, 7:46 PM
- As part of its major Domain 2.0 infrastructure project, AT&T (T) has sent a request for information (RFI) to equipment suppliers asking them to submit ideas and architectures that support software-defined networking (SDN) - the shifting of network intelligence to software-based controllers that interact with switches/routers.
- MKM's Michael Genovese predicts AT&T's RFI will likely "have significant long-term consequences" for the telecom equipment industry. He sees the impact being "most negative" for Cisco (CSCO), and a positive for Ciena (CIEN), F5 (FFIV), Finisar (FNSR), and early data center SDN software leader VMware (VMW, EMC)
- AT&T, like others, is enthusiastic about SDN's potential to lower management costs, improve network efficiency, speed the provisioning of new services, and allow "white box" switches/routers to take the place of proprietary hardware.
- The last feature has many Cisco investors nervous, given its potential to increase competition and pressure margins. John Chambers has declared white box hardware (already embraced by many Web/cloud companies) to be a major long-term threat.
- Cisco is counting on its powerful Insieme hardware/software and ACI architecture (meant to adapt to the needs of apps/services) to help neutralize the SDN threat. But Genovese thinks ACI "seems too complex and proprietary compared to more white box-oriented architectures."
- Regarding VMware, Genovese believes the company's NSX platform (combines SDN with other features) has "a strong chance of being selected as the Data Center virtualization platform." Strong uptake is expected for NSX, which has won the support of many Cisco rivals, starting in 2015. Major carrier SDN adoption is expected to arrive later.
Dec. 12, 2013, 11:51 AM
- Cisco (CSCO -2.3%) is now targeting annual revenue growth of 3%-6% over the next 3-5 years, down from a prior 5%-7%, says CFO Frank Calderoni states at the networking giant's analyst meeting. In addition, Calderoni says Cisco's FY14 (ends July '14) revenue growth outlook is "basically" in-line with a Street forecast for a 4% decline.
- Cisco is now aiming for services revenue growth of 7%-10% over the next 3-5 years, down from 9%-11%; services accounted for 22% of Cisco's Oct. quarter revenue. Businesses related to "enabling the cloud" (a somewhat nebulous term) are expected to show a 12%-18% growth rate.
- Cisco, already pressured by John Chambers' macro comments, continues to trade lower. Many networking equipment peers and component/chip suppliers are also selling off; in addition to Cisco, Ciena's mixed FQ4 results and slightly soft FQ1 guidance could be playing a role here.
- Notable networking equipment/component/chip decliners: JNPR -3.1%. BRCM -2.5%. PKT -2.8%. FFIV -2.2%. ERIC -2.1%. JDSU -1.9% (getting pulled from the S&P 500). AFOP -5.5%. CAVM -1.7%. AMCC -1.8%. BRCD -1.8%. MRVL -1.6%. ARUN -1.7%. CALX -1.7%.
Nov. 25, 2013, 6:45 PM
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.
FFIV vs. ETF Alternatives
F5 Networks Inc provides Application Delivery Networking (ADN) technology that secures and optimizes the delivery of network-based applications and the security, performance and availability of servers, and other network resources.
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