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Microchip Technology Inc. (MCHP - Free Report) reported first-quarter fiscal 2018 adjusted earnings (including stock-based compensation) of $1.25 per share, which beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 11 cents.

Adjusted earnings (excluding stock-based compensation) advanced 56% year over year and 12.9% sequentially to $1.31 per share in the quarter. The figure was better than management’s updated guidance range of $1.22-$1.26.

The strong growth was also driven by higher net sales, which surged 15.2% from the year-ago quarter to $972.1 million. On a sequential basis, net sales increased 7.7%.

Microchip provided positive guidance for the second quarter based on robust demand for its products. The stock has gained 25.8% year to date, substantially outperforming the 13.7% rally of the industry it belongs to.



Quarter Details

In terms of product line, microcontroller business (65.4% of net sales) increased 9.5% sequentially driven by robust demand for 8-bit, 16-bit and 32-bit microcontrollers. On a year-over-year basis revenues increased 18.1%, benefitting from the addition of Atmel’s product portfolio.

Analog sales (24.6% of net sales) increased 3.7% from the previous quarter. Revenues were negatively impacted by capacity constraint at Atmel. On a year-over-year basis, revenues increased 11.2%.
 

Microchip Technology Incorporated Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise

 

Microchip Technology Incorporated Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise | Microchip Technology Incorporated Quote

Memory sales (5% of net sales) were up 8.8% on a quarter-over-quarter basis.

Licensing (2.6% of net sales) sales increased 8.5% sequentially. MMO (2.4% of net sales) declined 0.5% from the previous quarter.

Geographically, Asia remained Microchip’s largest market, with 58% of net sales coming from the region. Europe and Americas contributed 23.2% and 18.8%, respectively.

Microchip posted non-GAAP gross margin of 60.4%, which expanded 460 basis points (bps) on a year-over-year basis and 150 bps sequentially. The figure was better than management’s expectation of 60%.

Non-GAAP operating expenses, as percentage of revenues, declined from 28.4% in the year-ago quarter to 22.9% in the reported quarter. The decline was primarily due to lower research & development (R&D) and selling, general & administrative (SG&A), which declined 320 bps and 230 bps, respectively.

As a result, non-GAAP operating margin expanded to 37.5% in the reported quarter from 27.4% in the year-ago quarter and 33.1% in the previous quarter. The figure was well above the high-end of the management’s guidance of 37%. Atmel achieved operating margins of more than 30% in the quarter.

Balance Sheet

Cash generated in the reported quarter was $345 million as compared with $322.6 million at the end of Mar 31. As of Jun 30, cash and total investment position was $1.65 billion as compared with $1.30 billion.

Management noted that inventory at Jun 30, was at 100 days, which was the lowest in 7 years. Distributor inventory at 31 days was also on the lower end of the company’s normal range.

Leverage continues to improve with net debt-to-EBITDA at 1.58 down from 1.94 at the end of the March quarter.

Guidance

Microchip forecasts second-quarter fiscal 2018 net sales to be $1,001.3 billion, which reflects approximately 3% growth on a sequential basis and 14.6% on a year-over-year basis.

Gross margin was anticipated to in the range of 60.5–60.75%, operating expenses as percentage of 22.5–23% and operating margin 37.5–38.25%.

Earnings are anticipated to be in the range of $1.33–$1.37 per share for the quarter. Atmel is forecasted to contribute 18–22 cents per share.

Microchip's inventory days at Sep 30, are expected to be 99 to 101 days. Capital expenditure is estimated to be approximately $70 million. Net cash generated in the quarter is anticipated to be $230–$250 million.

Management expects net debt-to-EBITDA to be under 1.3 by the end of the second quarter of fiscal 2018.

For fiscal 2018, capital expenditures are expected to be approximately $180 million up $10 million from the previous guidance.

Microchip forecasts annual growth expectations of high single digit growth over the long term.

Zacks Rank & Key Picks

Microchip carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). MaxLinear (MXL - Free Report) , Applied Optoelectronics (AAOI - Free Report) and Infineon (IFNNY - Free Report) are other top ranked stocks in the broader technology sector. All the three companies sport a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

MaxLinear, Applied Optoelectronics and Infineon have a long-term earnings growth rate of 17.50%, 18.75% and 15.45%, respectively.

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