In the most recent one-year period, shares of AMD (AMD) - Get Report are up a staggering 360%. For years, AMD has played second banana to Intel (INTC) - Get Report , but new management at AMD seems to have turned around the once-beleaguered chipmaker.
AMD's market share peaked at 17% over 10 years ago. At this point, AMD has less than a 3% share of the microprocessor market.
But CEO Lisa Su has repositioned AMD toward growing markets like artificial intelligence and PC gaming. In addition, AMD will finally begin to ship parts in a 14-nanometer die size, something that Intel has been doing since 2014. The refreshed product lineup is important because the chips are faster and use less power, so AMD's products will be much more competitive in the enterprise server market.
Performancewise, AMD's new Zen x86 family of microprocessors falls between Intel's latest efforts. So with an average selling price between $300 and $400 per chip vs. Intel's $700, AMD will finally be able to field some competitive silicon. Gaining share in servers is critical, because gross margins in servers are over 60%, while AMD's current margin is half that. Right now, AMD has server revenue of less than $45 million. If the company can get to 4% market share, it could have revenue over $200 million from the enterprise business.
AMD is also taking on Nvidia (NVDA) - Get Report in gaming. At one point, long ago, AMD supplied 30% of gaming processors, but today, AMD's market share is in the low teens. Nvidia has an estimated 87% share in the gaming business. Management hopes the updated products will add incremental revenue.
AMD could be an interesting speculation, but with the recent parabolic move in the stock, I would wait for a pullback. If the company is really turning around and fielding more competitive parts, there will be plenty of time to buy the stock.
This article is commentary by an independent contributor. At the time of publication, the author held no positions in the stocks mentioned.