Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (AMD): Ryzen Share-Gaining Steam to Push on Through 1Q

Between AMD's notebooks momentum and an advantage from Intel's Meltdown setback, Baird's Tristan Gerra is bullish on AMD's prospects.


Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMD) is attracting some tech enthusiast attention today upon setting loose the first Ryzen-Vega combo chips designed for desktop computers. These chips take a graphics and central processing unit (CPU) one-two punch, where the accelerated processing units (APUs) join forces with a Radeon Vega graphics processing unit (GPU)- all in the Zen CPU universe.

The goal? The chip giant’s team hopes to make gaming costs less expensive, along with other kinds of computing on desktop computers. These mark the first ever Ryzen Desktop APUs to feature these power graphics on desktop processors and are accessible across the globe. In reaction, shares are rising almost 3% today, with investors likely content to see AMD’s Ryzen portfolio that much stronger.

Baird analyst Tristan Gerra chimes in with a bullish take, wagering Ryzen’s market share gains are poised to keep flying through the first quarter of 2018.

As such, the analyst sings the praises of the memory chip giant, reiterating an Outperform rating on AMD stock with a $20 price target, which implies a 72% upside from current levels. (To watch Gerra’s track record, click here)

Keep in mind, during this same quarter last year, where the company’s CPU market share in notebooks hit 8%, AMD is now set to capture 12%. Moreover, Gerra writes, “AMD’s GPUs are expected to gain share in notebooks as well this first half, while there is emerging ODM feedback suggesting Meltdown vulnerability could help Ryzen’s share notably in the high-end enterprise PC market.”

Notebook original design manufacturer (ODM) surveys hint to Gerra that the company can grab 12% with CPU share in notebooks, which marks a slight jump from 11% in the fourth quarter and 9% in the third quarter. However, the company’s notebook-related units are looking at a 4% dip in the first quarter quarter-over-quarter against total notebook units slipping 11%.

The analyst comments, “Share gains are notably driven by adoption in HP and Dell notebooks. – AMD’s CPUs and GPUs are expected to ramp in new gaming notebooks at HP, Dell, and Lenovo this first half.”

Meanwhile, one rival’s setback can translate to a chip king’s imminent advantage- especially in terms of Intel’s Meltdown vulnerability: “Intel’s patches negatively impact performance, notably for certain high workload tasks. Intel patches impact overall PC performance by about 3%. AMD is largely immune to the Meltdown vulnerability.”

Lastly, regarding global notebook units, the analyst says that according to Digitimes, these are on the brink of an 11% fallback in the first quarter quarter-over-quarter. Yet, this actually marks a slight improvement compared to the first quarter of 2017, which experienced a 13% decline. All the same, a 2% boost year-over-year still stands.

“Notebook units rebounded 4% in 2017, following two consecutive years of declines. 1Q notebook drivers include Chromebooks, China’s gaming market, and an expected recovery in enterprise notebooks. Only 20-30% of enterprise PCs have upgraded to Windows 10,” Gerra surmises.

TipRanks highlights largely positive analyst sentiment making its way through Wall Street on the chip giant’s market opportunity. Out of 14 analysts polled in the last 3 months, 7 are bullish on AMD stock, 4 remain sidelined, while 3 are bearish on the stock. Is the stock overvalued or undervalued based on these analysts’ expectations? Consider that the 12-month average price target stands at $15.41, marking a solid upside potential of 33% from where the stock is currently trading.