Fri, Feb. 13, 9:15 AM| 3 Comments
Fri, Feb. 13, 3:28 AM
- Freescale Semiconductor (NYSE:FSL) has hired investment bankers to explore a possible sale, the NY Post reported, citing a source close to the situation.
- The company went public in 2011 after being taken private in 2006 for $17.6B.
- Freescale's shares have soared over 75% in the last three months, with much of the rise coming after its strong Q4 results.
Wed, Jan. 28, 12:44 PM
Wed, Jan. 28, 9:14 AM
Tue, Jan. 27, 5:35 PM
Tue, Jan. 27, 5:20 PM
- In addition to beating Q4 EPS estimates (while posting in-line revenue), Freescale (NYSE:FSL) is guiding for Q1 revenue of $1.135B-$1.185B, above a $1.11B consensus.
- Driving the EPS beat: Q4 gross margin was 47.2%, up 90 bps Q/Q and 330 bps Y/Y, and soundly beating guidance for a 75-100 bps Q/Q drop. GM is expected to be roughly flat Q/Q in Q1.
- RF chip sales (lifted by Chinese 4G base station demand) were a standout in Q4, rising 71% to $164M. Microcontroller sales +5% Y/Y to $232M. Digital networking -11% to $217M (carrier and industrial weakness). Automotive MCUs +1% to $271M. Analog/sensors +2% to $193M.
- Operating expenses rose 4% to $327M. $74M was spent on capex in Q4, and $249M over the whole of 2014.
- Shares have risen to $29.50 AH, making new 52-week highs along the way.
- Q4 results, PR
Tue, Jan. 27, 4:07 PM| Comment!
Mon, Jan. 26, 5:35 PM
Fri, Jan. 23, 9:26 AM
- Tezzaron Semiconductor, a maker of 3D memory ICs and SoC memory blocks, has obtained a license for Rambus' (NASDAQ:RMBS) ReRAM IP, along with related specs and validation suites.
- Tezzaron plans to "build ReRAM into storage-class 3D memory devices for military, aerospace and commercial applications," as well as to "implement ReRAM in an assortment of SoCs, FPGAs and processors." The company claims its Novati Technologies unit can use ReRAM to "add hundreds of megabytes of storage to a logic device manufactured in a standard commercial fab." The first Tezzaron ReRAM products are due in 2016.
- Though still in development-stage, ReRAM's proponents have declared it to be a potential flash memory replacement (more than a few would-be replacements have come and gone over the years), arguing the technology can deliver better performance and endurance, lower power draw, and a simpler chip architecture than NAND flash. Startup Crossbar Technologies has its own ReRAM development efforts.
- Rambus, which bought ReRAM developer Unity Semiconductor in 2012, has also struck licensing deals for the technology with Micron (NASDAQ:MU) and Freescale (NYSE:FSL) - Micron and Sony researchers showed off a 16Gb ReRam chip last February. Rambus' Q4 results arrive on Monday.
Thu, Jan. 8, 4:18 PM
- Hit hard on Tuesday amid a market rout, chip stocks have more than made up for it today: The Philadelphia Semi Index (SOXX +3%) handily exceeded the Nasdaq's 1.8% gain. The index posted a 1% gain yesterday.
- Micron (MU +4.9%) has been one of the standouts, more than recouping yesterday's post-earnings losses. Ditto Freescale (FSL +9.2%), which benefited from a Deutsche target hike, and Marvell, which got a lift from an MKM note. Others: NVDA +3.8%. NXPI +4.7%. AVGO +5%. SWKS +4.5%. CY +6.1%. CODE +5.9%. CAVM +5.2%. SWKS +4.5%. SLAB +4.5%. KLIC +3.8%. SMTC +3.6%. ATML +3.7%. FCS +4.2%. TSEM +4.2%.
- As is their custom, both chipmakers and their clients have been unveiling plenty of new products at CES.
- ETFs: SMH, XSD, PSI, SOXL, USD, SOXS, SSG
Dec. 5, 2014, 2:45 PM| Comment!
Dec. 3, 2014, 12:07 PM
- Freescale (NYSE:FSL) has jumped to levels last seen in mid-September. 2.1M shares have already changed hands; the 3-month daily average is 2.7M.
- The gains come a day after Freescale announced the acquisition of video-processing SoC vendor Zenverge. Freescale touts the ability to Zenverge's data-compression IP to lower the bandwidth needed to stream Ultra HD/4K (HEVC) video by up to 50%. Its products are used in home gateways, DVRs, and media servers; Broadcom is a rival.
Nov. 26, 2014, 2:52 PM
- Chip stocks are outperforming after Analog Devices (ADI +5.2%) beat FQ4 estimates and offered in-line FQ1 guidance. The Philadelphia Semi Index (SOXX +1.9%) has made new highs.
- Notable gainers include many analog/mixed-signal and telecom IC firms: TXN +3%. LLTC +2.7%. SMTC +3.1%. ISIL +3.3%. SWKS +3.7%. AVGO +2.9%. OVTI +3.2%. FSL +3.1%. EZCH +2.5%. XLNX +2.3%. ALTR +2.1%. MX +4.3%. PMCS +2.7%. BRCM +2%.
- On its CC (transcript), ADI noted its telecom equipment chip sales are holding up well in spite of weak capex, aided by the fact its dollar content for 4G base stations is "at least 20% to 30% better" than for 3G base stations. The company also mentioned its lead times were stable in FQ4.
- Chip ETFs: SMH, XSD, PSI, SOXL, USD, SOXS, SSG
Oct. 31, 2014, 11:31 AM
- Three weeks after providing a calendar Q3 warning that triggered a massive chip stock rout, Microchip (MCHP +7.3%) has provided Q4 guidance that's in-line with lowered estimates. The microcontroller vendor, which has often seen trends emerge ahead of peers, also said it saw most of its inventory correction in Q3, and expects Q4 sales to be just "slightly below typical seasonal levels."
- Chip stocks are up strongly (SOXX +4%) on a day the Nasdaq is up 1.4%. Since Microchip's warning, a slew of analog chipmakers and microcontroller firms (e.g. Atmel, Freescale, STMicro, Intersil, Linear) have offered light Q4 guidance, and other firms have reported seeing high-end Android weakness (e.g. Synaptics, Cirrus Logic, Amkor).
- On the other hand, several mobile chipmakers (Skyworks, RF Micro, TriQuint, Silicon Motion), some of which have decent iPhone exposure, have provided strong results and/or guidance. Other chipmakers, such as Broadcom, Texas Instruments, and Xilinx, have rallied after delivering in-line guidance.
- Susquehanna's Chris Caso: "By now, we think it’s clear that the weakness MCHP saw in September is not company specific ... The question now is if the full extent of the weakness has been dialed into estimates. If it has, then this would be among the shortest and mildest downturns in many years."
- Notable gainers: SNDK +3.9%. MU +4.1%. AMAT +3.9%. TXN +4.7%. NXPI +3.9%. NVDA +3.5%. MXIM +4.7%. LLTC +5.1%. FCS +9.6%. FSL +8.8%. ADI +6.5%. TQNT +6.8%. RFMD +6.5%. ATML +5.9%. AVGO +5.1%. MRVL +4.7%. AMCC +8.9%. BRCM +3.6%. TSM +4.4%. ARMH +3.3%.
- Intel (INTC +3.5%) has recovered most of the losses it saw yesterday due to Intesil's (ISIL +3.3%) results and guidance, and related comments about a PC chip inventory correction.
- Chip ETFs: SMH, XSD, PSI, SOXL, USD, SOXS, SSG
Oct. 24, 2014, 2:31 PM
- Down AH yesterday due to the light Q4 guidance offered with a Q3 EPS beat, Freescale (NYSE:FSL) has reversed course. Some bullish sell-side notes are helping.
- Credit Suisse's Jonathan Pitzer likes the face Freescale's gross margin rose 110 bps Q/Q in Q3 (better than guidance for a 50 bps drop), and that op. margin reached a record high of 18.7% thanks to a 3.5% Q/Q opex drop. " This should alleviate investor concerns relative to margin drivers that often seemed ambiguous."
- Deutsche's Ross Seymore: "Despite near term revenue headwind, we continue to view FSL as a company that is righting the ship on revenue, focusing on gross margin progression and opex discipline, which should result in better free cash flow to further de-lever the balance sheet and unlock earnings power."
- Oppenheimer's Rick Schafer is more cautious, calling Chinese 4G infrastructure demand "the lone bright spot" for the chipmaker's sales as it deals with auto/industrial softness.
Oct. 23, 2014, 6:25 PM
- Though it posted in-line Q3 revenue and beat EPS estimates, Freescale (NYSE:FSL) is guiding for Q4 revenue of $1.075B-$1.125B, below a $1.18B consensus. In addition, gross margin is expected to drop 75-100 bps from a Q3 level of 46.3%.
- Freescale was among the names clocked earlier this month by fellow microcontroller vendor Microchip's warning.
- Q3 results, PR
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