How Investors Can Seize Opportunities in NVDA Amid Market Volatility

According to Todd Gordon, the founder of Inside Edge Capital, NVIDIA Corporation (NVDA) is a strong buy despite a recent pullback. The chart analyst also set a target price of $1,150 for the stock.

“I say that NVDA is just resting its legs gearing up for another move, but this time it's bringing more friends along for the run. There are quite a few different names in the semi-industry setup in a similar fashion telling me that once again the chips are ready to rip,” Gordon said.

Moreover, on March 13, Bank of America maintained its buy rating on NVDA and raised its price target from $925 to $1,100. As per BofA analyst Vivek Arya, Nvidia is expected to dominate the $90 billion accelerator market in 2024, unaffected by Google’s new CPU launch.

Last month, CNBC’s Jim Cramer suggested investors welcome an impending pullback. “I think people are right to expect a pullback here,” Cramer said. “But that’s not a reason to head for the hills. Instead, you want to raise a little cash, watch the market broaden — as it is doing — and then buy your favorite tech stocks when they come down.”

In Particular, Cramer said there may be an attractive opportunity to invest in one of his favorite stocks, NVDA. He hinted at his continued support for the tech giant over the years, even when the stock witnessed significant losses. While some on Wall Street might be growing weary of AI, Cramer emphasized that the future “runs on Nvidia.”

“If you don’t own Nvidia already, you know what? You’re about to get a sale,” he stated. “And if you do own it already, just stick with it, because it’s way too hard to swap out and then swap back in at the right level.”

Shares of NVDA have surged more than 75% year-to-date and nearly 223% over the past year. However, the stock has plunged around 3% over the past month.

Now, let’s discuss in detail factors that could influence NVDA’s performance in the near term:

Fourth-Quarter Beat on Revenue and Earnings

The chip giant reported fourth-quarter 2024 earnings that beat analysts’ expectations. For the quarter that ended January 28, 2024, NVDA’s non-GAAP revenue came in at $22.10 billion, surpassing analysts’ estimate of $20.55 billion. This compared to revenue of $6.05 billion in the same quarter of 2022.

The company posted a record revenue from the Data Center segment of $18.4 billion, up 409% from the year-ago value. NVIDIA achieved significant progress in this business segment. In collaboration with Google, NVDA launched optimizations across its data center and PC AI platforms for Gemma, Google’s groundbreaking open language models.

Further, the company expanded its partnership with Amazon Web Services (AWS) to host NVIDIA® DGX™ Cloud on AWS.

Regarding technological innovations, NVIDIA introduced several groundbreaking solutions, including NVIDIA NeMo™ Retriever. It is a generative AI microservice that enables enterprises to connect custom large language models with enterprise data, delivering highly accurate responses for various AI applications.

Additionally, NVIDIA launched NVIDIA MONAI™ cloud APIs, facilitating the seamless integration of AI into medical-imaging offerings for developers and platform providers.

The company’s Gaming revenue for the quarter was $2.90 billion, up 56% year-over-year. Talking about recent developments in the Gaming division, NVIDIA launched GeForce RTX™ 40 SUPER Series GPUs, starting at $599, featuring advanced RTX™ technologies such as DLSS 3.5 Ray Reconstruction and NVIDIA Reflex for enhanced gaming experiences.

The company also introduced microservices for the NVIDIA Avatar Cloud Engine, enabling game and application developers to integrate state-of-the-art generative AI models into non-playable characters, enhancing immersion and interactivity in virtual worlds.

NVIDIA’s non-GAAP operating income increased 563.2% year-over-year to $14.75 billion. Also, the company’s non-GAAP net income grew 490.6% from the previous year’s period to $12.84 billion. It reported non-GAAP earnings per share of $5.16, compared to the consensus estimate of $4.63, and up 486% year-over-year.

Furthermore, the company’s non-GAAP free cash flow was $11.22 billion, an increase of 546.1% from the previous year’s quarter. Its total current assets stood at $44.35 billion as of January 28, 2024, compared to $23.07 billion as of January 29, 2023.

During a call with analysts, Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang addressed investor concerns regarding the company's ability to sustain its current growth or sales levels throughout the year.

“Fundamentally, the conditions are excellent for continued growth” in 2025 and beyond, Huang told analysts. He added that the continued demand for the company’s GPUs would persist, driven by the adoption of generative AI and an industry-wide shift from central processors to Nvidia's accelerators.

For the first quarter of fiscal 2025, NVIDIA expects revenue of $24 billion. The company’s non-GAAP gross margin is expected to be 77%.

Recent Announcement of AI Chips During Nvidia GTC AI Conference

NVDA announced a new generation of AI chips and software tailored for running AI models during its developer's conference at SAP Center on March 18 in San Jose, California. This announcement underscores the chipmaker’s efforts to solidify its position as the go-to supplier for AI companies.

The new generation of AI graphics processors is named Blackwell. The first Blackwell chip is the GB200 and is anticipated to ship later this year. It will also be available as an entire server called the GB200 NVLink 2, combining 72 Blackwell GPUs and other Nvidia parts designed to train AI models. NVIDIA is enticing customers by offering more powerful chips to spur new orders.

The announcement comes as companies and software makers still scramble to get their hands on the current “Hopper” H100s and similar chips.

“Hopper is fantastic, but we need bigger GPUs,” Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang said at the company’s developer conference.

Further, the tech giant unveiled revenue-generating software called NIM, which stands for Nvidia Inference Microservices, to its Nvidia enterprise software subscription. NIM simplifies using older Nvidia GPUs for inference or running AI software and will enable companies to leverage the hundreds of millions of Nvidia GPUs they already own.

According to Nvidia executives, the company is transitioning from primarily being a mercenary chip provider to becoming more of a platform provider, like Microsoft Corporation (MSFT) or Apple Inc. (AAPL), on which other firms can build software.

Analysts at Goldman Sachs retained a buy rating of NVDA stock and raised their price target to $1,000 from $875. They expressed “renewed appreciation” for Nvidia’s innovation, customer and partner relationships, and vital role in the generative AI space after the company’s keynote.

“Based on our recent industry conversations, we expect Blackwell to be the fastest ramping product in Nvidia’s history,” the analysts said. “Nvidia has played (and will continue to play) an instrumental role in democratizing AI across many industry verticals.”

Bottom Line

NVDA surpassed Wall Street’s estimates for earnings and sales in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2023. The chipmaker has significantly benefited from the recent technology industry obsession with large AI models, which are developed on its pricey graphics processors for servers.

Moreover, sales reported in the company’s Data Center business comprise most of its revenue. NVDA’s Data Center platform is driven by diverse drivers like demand for data processing, training and inference from large cloud-service providers, GPU-specialized ones, enterprise software, and consumer internet companies.

Further, vertical industries, led by automotive, financial services, and healthcare, are now at a multibillion-dollar level.

The data center GPU market is projected to be worth more than $63 billion by 2028, growing at a staggering CAGR of 34.6% during the forecast period (2024-2028). The increasing adoption of data center GPUs in enterprises should bode well for NVDA.

Analysts expect NVDA’s revenue and EPS for the fiscal 2025 first quarter (ending April 2024) to increase 237.7% and 405.9% year-over-year to $24.29 billion and $5.51, respectively. Moreover, the company has topped consensus revenue and EPS estimates in all four trailing quarters, which is remarkable.

Furthermore, for the fiscal year ending January 2025, the company’s revenue and EPS are expected to grow 83% and 92.1% from the prior year to $111.49 billion and $24.89, respectively.

NVDA has achieved significant progress across its business divisions, and this year, it will bring new product cycles with exceptional innovations to help boost its industry forward.

Since the AI boom began in late 2022, catalyzed by OpenAI’s ChatGPT, Nvidia’s stock has been up fivefold, and its total sales have more than tripled. The company’s high-end server GPUs are essential for training and deploying large AI models. Notably, tech companies like MSFT and Meta Platforms, Inc. (META) have spent billions of dollars buying these chips.

Recently, the chipmaker announced a new generation of AI chips and software for running AI models, giving customers another reason to stick to Nvidia chips over a growing field of competitors, including Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (AMD) and Intel Corporation (INTC).

While NVDA’s stock has declined nearly 3% over the past month, several analysts affirmed their bullish sentiment toward the stock and see a significant upside potential, owing to its booming AI business and new innovative launches to maintain its leading position in the face of rising competition.

Given these factors, investors could consider buying NVDA for potential gains.

AMD vs. Nvidia: The Battle for Trillion-Dollar Dominance in AI

The trillion-dollar club, boasting only, Inc. (AMZN), Alphabet Inc. (GOOG), and Meta Platforms, Inc. (META) as its only members, is incredibly exclusive. However, the landscape might soon shift, with another company on the brink of joining the ranks within the next decade.

Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (AMD), being a stalwart force in driving innovation for over 50 years, particularly in high-performance computing, graphics, and visualization technologies, has now emerged as a formidable contender to NVIDIA Corporation (NVDA) in the AI chip market, signaling a potential shake-up in the industry's hierarchy.

AMD's Growth and Expansion Ventures

AMD stands to benefit significantly from its expansion initiatives, evidenced by the recent unveiling of its MI300 lineup. These data center chips, catering to AI workloads, offer two configurations: the pure GPU MI300X and the combined GPU-CPU MI300A, directly challenging NVDA's dominance.

With NVDA struggling to meet chip demand, AMD has a prime opportunity to capture market share. This sentiment was echoed at the "Advancing AI" event, where industry giants showcased their use of AMD's Instinct MI300X accelerators for cloud and enterprise AI infrastructure, reflecting growing adoption and trust in AMD's offerings.

Moreover, AMD's efforts to expand its AI software ecosystem, exemplified by the ROCm™ 6 software stack optimized for generative AI, have garnered support from key players like Databricks and OpenAI. The collaboration could position AMD as a preferred choice for AI solutions, further enhancing its competitive edge.

The company's commitment to innovation further extends to hardware, with the integration of neural processing units (NPUs) in its Ryzen 8040 Series mobile processors. The advancement, delivering up to 1.6x more AI processing performance, has garnered interest from leading PC OEMs, with new laptops featuring AMD Ryzen 8040 Series processors set to hit the market soon.

Additionally, strategic partnerships, including the one with Microsoft Corporation (MSFT), underscore AMD's role in enabling new services and computing capabilities across various domains, including cloud computing and AI-capable PCs. Such collaborations validate AMD's technology prowess and ability to drive transformative business outcomes.

Furthermore, its collaboration with JR Kyushu Railway Company highlights its foray into AI-driven automation, revolutionizing traditional track inspection methods with the AMD Kria™ K26 System-on-Module.

The deployment highlights AMD's commitment to innovation and its potential to address real-world challenges with AI-powered solutions, further solidifying its position as a critical player in the evolving tech landscape.

AMD’s Robust Financial Performance

AMD's fiscal 2023 fourth quarter showcased remarkable growth across its Data Center and Embedded segments, driven by significant developments. Notably, the company achieved record Data Center segment annual revenue and robust overall growth, buoyed by the rising adoption of Instinct AI accelerators and strong demand for EPYC server CPUs across cloud, enterprise, and AI sectors.

The company’s revenue for the fourth quarter surged by 10% year-over-year to $6.17 billion, fueled by substantial double-digit growth in both the Data Center and Client segments. The remarkable $1.2 billion increase in annual revenue for the Data Center and Embedded segments is of particular significance, which collectively contributed over 50% of the total revenue for 2023.

This surge underlines AMD's success in capturing server market share, driven by the launch of next-generation Instinct AI accelerators and its continued leadership in adaptive computing solutions.

In addition, the company's fourth-quarter non-GAAP gross profit grew 10% year-over-year to $3.13 billion, while operating income was up 12% from the year-ago value to $1.41 billion. Similarly, its non-GAAP net income and non-GAAP EPS grew 12% from the prior year's period to $1.25 billion and $0.77, respectively.

AMD and NVDA Growth Comparison

AMD's recent strides toward securing a spot in the trillion-dollar club spell trouble for its rival, NVDA. AMD's robust growth trajectory seems poised to challenge and potentially surpass NVDA in the market. This is primarily due to the recent events in the stock market, which have raised eyebrows.

NVDA's stock took a significant hit last week, tumbling into correction territory with a 10% decline from its recent peak. This downturn comes at a crucial juncture, highlighting potential vulnerabilities for the market darling.

Adding to NVDA's woes is the persistent supply constraint plaguing its H100 GPU chips. Despite soaring demand, the company has struggled to meet supply requirements for months, leading to significant challenges in fulfilling orders. The severity of this supply-demand mismatch was underscored by Tesla, Inc. (TSLA) CEO Elon Musk's admission that even TSLA couldn't acquire the chips quickly enough.

Furthermore, the lackluster performance of NVDA's stock from July 2023 to October 2023, as highlighted by Evercore ISI strategist Julian Emanuel, serves as a cautionary tale. This stagnant period failed to generate momentum for NVDA and catalyzed broader market downturns, impacting the S&P 500 index.

In light of AMD's upward trajectory and NVDA's recent setbacks, it's evident that the competitive landscape in the semiconductor industry is undergoing a significant shift, with AMD emerging as a formidable challenger to NVDA's dominance.

Furthermore, in a Texas federal court, NVIDIA was sued for trademark infringement by the financial technology company Modulus Financial Engineering over the chipmaker's Modulus artificial intelligence software.

Modulus Financial asked the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas to force NVDA to stop using the Modulus name, which it said would create consumer confusion with its AI-related software.

Bottom Line

Investor interest in AI has reached a fever pitch, driving substantial gains in the stock market throughout 2023 and 2024. With the global AI market valued at $515.31 billion in 2023 and projected to reach $2.74 trillion by 2032, the industry's growth trajectory is undeniable.

The surge in AI is fueled by several factors, including the proliferation of AI applications, increased partnerships, the emergence of small-scale AI platforms, and the evolving needs of businesses to navigate complexities. AMD, recognizing the immense potential, is heavily investing in the sector and forging lucrative partnerships to solidify its position in the AI landscape.

Moreover, with potent AI accelerator designs and leveraging third-party manufacturing solutions, AMD is poised to capture significant market share in the AI space, potentially elevating its status in investor discussions alongside NVDA.

Further, AMD's discounted valuation compared to NVDA presents an attractive investment opportunity, further bolstering its appeal as a solid buy in the market. Regarding forward EV/Sales, AMD is trading at 10.15x, 47.5% lower than NVDA's 19.34x. Also, the stock’s trailing-12-month Price/Sales and Price to Book are 11.62x and 4.72x compared to NVDA's 35.74x and 50.56x, respectively.

Against this backdrop, AMD stands well-positioned to make it into the trillion-dollar club and surpass NVDA with its innovative product launches, strategic investments and partnerships, and market dominance.

Is Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing (TSM) The Backbone of AI Chip Manufacturing?

The semiconductor industry is experiencing an unprecedented buzz at the moment. In March, KPMG unveiled its 2024 Global Semiconductor Industry Outlook after surveying 172 executives in the field. A staggering 85% of these individuals projected a double-digit increase in the industry’s revenue in 2024.

The automotive industry, artificial intelligence (AI), and microprocessors remain the primary catalysts for growth in the semiconductor sector. Notably, NVIDIA Corporation (NVDA), a leading vendor of graphics processing unit (GPU) components essential to powering cutting-edge AI systems, has emerged as a prominent beneficiary due to its strong market position.

Another tech stock, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company Limited (TSM), also seems well-positioned to ride the AI wave. Also known as TSMC, the company is the largest contract semiconductor foundry globally, with a market cap of $705.69 billion. It oversees production for many renowned chip designers, such as NVDA, Apple Inc. (AAPL), and Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (AMD).

TSM is dominant in the third-party chip manufacturing sector, claiming over 50% of the market share. This immense power grants the company significant influence within the semiconductor industry, particularly in the realm of AI chips. TSM takes charge of approximately 90% of advanced chip production for third-party companies, making its role crucial for AI models reliant on such technology.

Furthermore, TSM is currently overcoming a previous downturn in the semiconductor sector and experiencing an upturn in growth, aided by advancements in artificial intelligence. On March 8, the company disclosed a consolidated revenue of NT$181.65 billion ($5.68 billion) for February 2024, representing a rise of 11.3% from February 2023.

Moreover, TSM’s January through February 2024 revenue reached NT$397.43 billion ($12.43 billion), showcasing a noteworthy surge of 9.4% compared to the corresponding period in 2023.

In addition, as of December 31, 2023, the company's cash and cash equivalents amounted to $47.66 billion, up 9.1% year-over-year. Moreover, as of December 31, 2023, total assets grew 11.4% year-over-year to $179.93 billion. TSM’s strong liquidity position provides resilience, flexibility, and opportunities for growth and value creation, enhancing the company’s financial health and competitiveness in the market.

Strategic Investments and Expansion Plans

TSM has been actively investing in strategic initiatives to fortify its global dominance in producing cutting-edge semiconductor chips. It boasts a staggering 90% share in manufacturing these highly coveted chips, integral to the functionality of various devices, including smartphones and AI technology.

Although there may be a few geopolitical uncertainties impacting TSM, with the company having its headquarters in Taiwan, which China asserts as part of its territory, it is actively expanding its operations beyond Taiwanese borders.

Recently, TSM unveiled its inaugural fabrication plant in Kumamoto, Japan. Plans are also underway to inaugurate two $40 billion facilities dedicated to producing advanced microprocessors in Phoenix, Arizona. Additionally, TSM has committed $3.80 billion to establish a fabrication plant in Dresden, Germany, marking its first establishment in Europe.

Furthermore, NVDA plans to introduce advancements to its H100 and GH100 models in the second quarter of 2024 - the H200 and GH200. It has also debuted the B100/B200 and GB200 on its Blackwell platform during GTC. These chip offerings will significantly enhance operations for NVDA’s AI GPU’s sole maker -TSM.

AMD predicts that the market for AI GPUs will reach $400 billion by 2027, with a CAGR of 70%. TSM has already committed substantial capital expenditures to increase its production capacity and meet customer demands in this expanding market.

TSM’s management anticipates that the fiscal 2024 first-quarter revenue will range from $18.0 billion to $18.8 billion. The company’s gross profit margin could fall between 52% and 54%, while its operating profit margin is expected to range from 40% to 42%. Its 2024 CapEx guidance of $28 billion to $32 billion indicates a strategic shift where the rate of capital spending growth is stabilizing as TSMC capitalizes on its growth opportunities.

TSM plans to manage its capital with a focus on several key objectives: funding organic growth, ensuring profitability, maintaining financial flexibility, and delivering sustainable and increasing cash dividends to shareholders. Owing to diligent capital management, TSM's Board of Directors authorized in November 2023 to increase the cash dividend for the third quarter of 2023 from NT$3 ($0.09) to NT$3.50 ($0.11) per share.

From now on, this will be the new minimum quarterly dividend level. The cash dividend for the third quarter of 2023 will be paid out in April 2024.

Moreover, TSM’s shareholders received a cash dividend of NT$11.25 ($0.35) per share in 2023, and they will receive a minimum of NT$13.5 ($0.42) per share in 2024. In the coming years, the company anticipates a shift in its cash dividend policy, moving from maintaining sustainable dividends to steadily increasing cash dividends per share.

Bottom Line

Investors aiming to capitalize on the AI boom should prioritize investing in companies that play an indispensable role in developing and promoting AI technologies. Focusing on foundational players in the chip industry is crucial as these companies are well-positioned to drive and benefit from AI advancements in the long term. One such promising industry player is TSMC.

Though TSM does not immediately appear as an AI staple, its role in the AI pipeline is paramount and arguably on par with any other enterprise. Data centers rely heavily on GPUs, which serve as the neural center of AI computing systems. The process heavily relies on TSM's exceptional manufacturing processes and the semiconductors that it produces for its client companies.

TSMC’s chief executive officer, C.C. Wei, foresees the company’s AI-centric chip revenue to expand at a CAGR of 50%. By 2027, he projects AI chips to make up a high-teens portion of the company’s revenue.

With its operations well-suited to leverage the ongoing AI wave, TSM’s stock has surged more than 57% over the past six months. Positioned firmly with a proven track record of success, strategic investments, and a flourishing market for AI-based chips, TSM presents an appealing opportunity for investors seeking substantial returns.

Intel’s Stock Outlook: AI Growth vs. Regulatory Risks

The enthusiasm surrounding artificial intelligence (AI) ever since the debut of ChatGPT in November 2022 is still in full swing, rapidly engulfing various industries. This relentless wave of innovation is reshaping the technological landscape, with tech giants racing to develop cutting-edge generative AI models to meet escalating demands.

Among the beneficiaries of this AI boom, the semiconductor industry finds itself in an enviable spot, poised to capitalize on the surging need for AI chips capable of powering generative AI models. With the AI revolution continuing to gain momentum, chip giant Intel Corporation (INTC) is strategically positioning itself to harness this wave of transformation.

Despite most of last year’s AI frenzy being indebted to NVIDIA Corporation (NVDA), thanks to its GPUs powering prominent AI models, such as ChatGPT, INTC is determined not to lag behind either.

Last year, INTC introduced Gaudi3, an AI chip tailored for generative AI software. Expected to debut this year, Gaudi3 will join the competition against NVDA’s H100, a popular option for companies constructing extensive chip farms to drive AI applications, and Advanced Micro Devices, Inc.’s (AMD) upcoming MI300X, slated to begin shipping to customers in 2024.

In addition to Gaudi3, INTC unveiled Core Ultra chips tailored for Windows laptops and PCs alongside new fifth-generation Xeon server chips. Notably, both chip variants feature a dedicated AI component known as an NPU, enhancing the capability to execute AI programs more swiftly.

This strategic move also serves as a signal to investors regarding the potential for increased demand for their chips in the AI-driven landscape.

Furthermore, in a recent move, INTC unveiled a range of new platforms, solutions, and services encompassing network and edge AI, Intel® Core™ Ultra processors, the AI PC, and beyond. This initiative aims to enhance total cost of ownership (TCO) and operational efficiency while ushering in fresh innovations and services.

In this modern era, where staying competitive necessitates embracing technological advancements, INTC is rolling out products and solutions to enable its customers, partners, and vast ecosystems to seize the emerging opportunities presented by AI and integrated automation.

With the demand for chips that fuel generative AI models soaring all across the globe, industry giants like INTC, AMD, and NVDA are engaging in fierce competition to deliver cutting-edge AI chips, surpassing escalating performance expectations.

However, the ambitious expansion plans of these major chip giants met with hurdles last year in October when the Biden administration implemented measures to restrict the types of semiconductors that American companies can sell to China.

U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo emphasized the administration's commitment to safeguarding national security by limiting access to critical technologies, rigorously enforcing regulations, and minimizing unintended impacts on trade flows.

Nevertheless, INTC bypassed export restrictions by supplying chips worth hundreds of millions of dollars to the heavily sanctioned Chinese tech and telecom companies in Huawei. This move, which allowed INTC to furnish Huawei with chips for laptop use, has sparked criticism from its competitor, AMD.

INTC’s chip sales to Huawei notably surged between 2020 and 2023, while AMD's sales witnessed a decline.

This discrepancy arose from the United States Department of Commerce granting special permissions to select American suppliers of Huawei, including INTC, to sell specific items to the company in 2020. However, AMD's efforts to secure a license to sell similar chips under President Joe Biden's administration went unanswered.

On the other hand, despite bypassing restrictions to sell chips to Huawei, INTC experienced a decline in overall sales in China in 2023 due to the export ban. China holds significant importance for INTC, with revenue from billings to the country constituting 27% of its total sales.

Last year, INTC generated a total of $14.85 billion of its revenue in China, marking a year-over-year decline of more than 13%.

Meanwhile, both AMD and NVDA witnessed a notable decline in sales to China, surpassing that of INTC as a result of the stringent export control regulations imposed by the U.S. government.

Moreover, there is a growing likelihood that INTC could encounter comparable restrictions to those faced by AMD and NVDA. This stems from mounting pressure on President Biden to revoke the license granted by the Trump administration, permitting INTC to continue chip supplies to Huawei.

Bottom Line

With shares roughly up more than 50% over the past year, INTC has successfully capitalized on the AI tailwinds. Despite challenges, including export restrictions and intensifying competition, INTC remains committed to innovation and expansion in the AI chip market.

According to Gartner, Intel holds the top position as the largest semiconductor maker by revenue in 2023 despite having a market cap that ranks below NVDA and AMD. The company’s fourth-quarter results witnessed a 9.7% year-over-year rise in its topline figure, reaching $15.41 billion. Its net income stood at $2.67 billion versus a net loss of $664 million in the prior year’s quarter.

Pat Gelsinger, CEO of INTC, remarked that the company achieved robust fourth-quarter results, surpassing expectations for the fourth consecutive quarter, with revenue reaching the higher end of their guidance.

Furthermore, he emphasized INTC’s commitment to advancing its mission of making AI technology accessible across various sectors while generating long-term value for stakeholders.

The stock also appears quite reasonably priced compared to its industry peers. For instance, INTC’s non-GAAP price-to-earnings (P/E) ratio of 31.21x is lower than NVDA’s 35.62x and AMD’s 52.36x, respectively.

However, despite its commendable efforts and dedication to capture the global AI chip market, there is an increasing possibility that INTC may encounter similar restrictions as those faced by AMD and NVDA.

This adds uncertainty to Intel’s prospects, particularly as its competitor NVDA plans to initiate mass production of a downgraded version of its AI chips specifically designed for China in the second quarter of 2024 to comply with U.S. export regulations.

In conclusion, while INTC has made significant strides in the AI chip sector and boasts solid fundamentals, the looming regulatory challenges pose a risk to its growth trajectory. Therefore, investors could carefully monitor the stock for now and wait for a better entry point.

Forget NVDA, Buy This AI Stock Instead

Dell Technologies Inc. (DELL) is thriving amid the burgeoning artificial intelligence (AI) revolution, capitalizing on robust adoption. Following a stellar fiscal 2024 fourth-quarter earnings report, Dell’s stock hovers near record highs. Active participation in the AI landscape is propelling the company’s prospects, aligning with the prevailing industry momentum.

Last Friday, DELL's stock witnessed a staggering 30% surge. Investors lauded the company’s AI-driven advancements and heightened demand for its offerings, driving the year-to-date surge to 54%.

The Texas-based tech firm reported fourth-quarter adjusted earnings per share of $2.20, surpassing analysts’ expectations of $1.72. Additionally, Dell’s revenue amounted to $22.32 billion, exceeding the projected $22.17 billion. Strong data center server sales for generative AI applications offset sluggish PC sales during the period.

During the quarter that ended February 2, 2024, DELL experienced a 10.9% year-over-year decline in revenue to $22.32 billion. However, the company’s net income surged 91.1% from the prior year’s period to $1.16 billion. Despite a 5.8% year-over-year decrease, its Infrastructure Solutions Group (ISG) contributed $9.33 billion to revenue.

AI-optimized servers emerged as the primary revenue driver, generating $4.86 billion, while storage revenue saw a significant 9.9% sequential rise, contributing $4.48 billion. Servers and networking remained pivotal, underscoring DELL's strategic focus on AI-driven solutions and storage innovations.

Jeff Clarke, Vice Chairman and Chief Operating Officer of DELL, highlighted the company's robust AI-optimized server momentum, citing a nearly 40% sequential increase in orders and a doubling backlog, reaching $2.9 billion by the end of the fiscal year.

Clarke said, “We’ve just started to touch the AI opportunities ahead of us, and we believe Dell is uniquely positioned with our broad portfolio to help customers build GenAI solutions that meet performance, cost and security requirements.”

Turning to cash inflows and the balance sheet, DELL reported a fourth-quarter cash inflow from operations of $1.50 billion, primarily fueled by profitability. The company ended the quarter with $9 billion in cash and investments, and it reached its core leverage target of 1.5x, exiting the fiscal year 2024.

During the quarter, the company repurchased 11.2 million shares of stock and paid a quarterly dividend of $0.37 per share. Furthermore, DELL announced a 20% hike in its annual dividend, now standing at $1.78 per share. The dividend increase surpasses the company’s long-term financial framework and underscores its confidence in the business trajectory and capacity to generate robust cash flow.

Strategic Business Advancements

DELL has been expanding its portfolio to meet diverse customer needs across clouds, on-premises, and at the edge. Enhancements to the Dell Generative AI Solutions portfolio include support for Advanced Micro Devices, Inc.’s (AMD) Instinct™ MI300X accelerator in PowerEdge XE9680 servers and a new DELL Validated Design for Generative AI with AMD ROCm™ powered AI frameworks.

New enterprise data storage advancements have also been introduced, with planned validation with the NVIDIA Corporation’s (NVDA) DGX SuperPOD AI infrastructure, facilitating swift access to data for AI workloads using DELL PowerScale systems.

Moreover, the company has unveiled plans for the broadest portfolio of commercial AI laptops and mobile workstations, integrating built-in AI acceleration with neural processing unit (NPU) technology. Additionally, new XPS systems boast NPU integration, enhancing performance, productivity, and collaboration.

Furthermore, DELL has forged a strategic partnership with Nokia Corporation (NOK), becoming its preferred infrastructure partner for Nokia AirFrame customers. The collaboration entails transitioning to DELL PowerEdge servers with comprehensive DELL global services and support.

A Comparative Analysis of DELL and NVDA’s Performance

Following its robust fiscal 2024 fourth-quarter results reported last Thursday, DELL’s stock has surged significantly, showcasing its dominance in AI offerings. The momentum stems from DELL’s utilization of NVDA’s AI-powered GPUs for its servers, aligning with the chip giant's remarkable success.

DELL’s AI-optimized servers integrate graphics processing units (GPUs) from both NVDA and AMD. Clark noted that the heightened demand was across the H100, H800, H200, and MI300X, with the first three GPUs manufactured by NVDA and the last one by AMD.

This development is likely to please NVDA investors, given that the company also reported fourth fiscal quarter earnings surpassing Wall Street's expectations for both earnings and sales. However, its CEO, Jensen Huang, has acknowledged investor concerns regarding the sustainability of this growth and sales level throughout the year.

Furthermore, NVDA’s data center revenue suffered due to recent U.S. constraints on exporting advanced AI semiconductors to China. NVDA’s CFO, Colette Kress, highlighted that despite enhancements in the supply of AI GPUs, shortages are still anticipated, particularly for the upcoming next-generation chip, dubbed B100, slated for shipment later this year.

Additionally, NVDA’s smaller ventures didn’t exhibit the same remarkable growth. Its automotive segment experienced a 4% decline, generating $281 million in sales, while its OEM and other businesses, encompassing crypto chips, saw a mere 7% increase to $90 million.

Moreover, NVIDIA’s valuation is deemed excessively high, positioning DELL as a more favorable investment choice at present.

In terms of forward P/E, DELL is trading at 26.78x, 29.5% lower than NVDA’s 37.96x. DELL's forward EV/Sales of 1.12x is 94.1% lower compared to NVDA’s 18.91x. Additionally, DELL's forward EV/EBITDA of 9.48x contrasts with NVDA’s 29.38x.

Reflecting the heightened demand and growing interest in enterprise AI, DELL’s stock has surged nearly 37% over the past month, outpacing NVDA’s gain of 24%. Furthermore, DELL has skyrocketed more than 155% over the past nine months, while NVDA has gained approximately 119% during the same period.

DELL's Upbeat Fiscal 2025 Projections

DELL's confidence in its fiscal year 2025 outlook stems from three pivotal trends: the escalating momentum in AI, notable enhancements in traditional servers, and the imminent refresh of the aging PC installed base. Against this backdrop, DELL anticipates fiscal 2025 revenue between $91 billion and $95 billion, with a midpoint of $93 billion, reflecting 5% growth, surpassing its long-term value creation framework.

The company anticipates ISG to surge in the mid-teens, driven by AI, with a resurgence in traditional servers and storage. CSG business is forecasted to expand in the low single digits for the year. The amalgamation of ISG and CSG is expected to grow by 8% at the midpoint, counterbalanced by a decline in other sectors.

For the first quarter of fiscal 2025, DELL projects revenue between $21 billion and $22 billion, centered around $21.5 billion, marking a 3% increase. The company anticipates ISG and CSG combined to grow by 5% at the midpoint, with ISG climbing in the mid-to-high teens.

Yvonne McGill, DELL’s CFO, said, “We have strong conviction in the growth of our TAM over the long term, and we are committed to delivering against our long-term financial framework with average annual revenue growth of 3% to 4%, diluted EPS growth of at least 8% and a net income-to-adjusted free cash flow conversion of 100% or better over time.”

She has also emphasized the commitment to returning 80% or more of the adjusted free cash flow to shareholders over the long term.

Bottom Line

DELL, renowned for its PC business, has garnered considerable attention due to increased demand for its resilient servers designed for AI workloads. The fourth-quarter results showcased an enduring interest in DELL’s AI offerings, spotlighting the Dell PowerEdge XE9680 as the fastest-ramping solution in the company’s history.

After DELL’s strong earnings report, analysts have voiced optimism and confidence in the stock’s performance. Morgan Stanley analysts, led by Erik W. Woodring, upheld a Top Pick rating for DELL stock, raising the 12-month target price from $100 to $128.

Additionally, Goldman Sachs analyst Michael Ng has expressed a favorable outlook, suggesting that DELL’s stock is poised to trade higher, buoyed by the stronger-than-expected AI server backlog and improved margins in the Infrastructure Solutions Group (ISG). That bolsters the bank’s bullish stance on heightened earnings potential and sustained growth amidst robust AI demand.

Industry experts have also emphasized DELL’s position as a clear leader in the AI hardware and services market, citing the company’s ability to swiftly supply high-end server models with accelerators from various silicon providers. Dell’s competitive advantage positions it to capitalize on the early stages of the AI server opportunity, especially in the enterprise-focused market.

Expansion in AI servers will also drive growth in DELL’s storage business. With extensive training conducted using rich data sets, the company’s venture into enterprise territory presents a burgeoning storage opportunity. DELL has enhanced performance concerning latency-sensitive workloads, aligning with enterprise requirements as customers transition from training to inference.

In conclusion, DELL’s outstanding fourth-quarter performance and upbeat fiscal 2025 outlook, propelled by AI server momentum, have instilled investor confidence and received a commendation from analysts. Given NVDA’s slowing revenue growth, regulatory challenges, and alarming valuation, it could be wise to invest in fundamentally sound AI stock DELL instead.