AMD cites enterprise, cloud strength in Q3 beat, higher year view

AMD said enterprise use of EPYC was particularly strong in the quarter among Dell, Lenovo, Cisco and other system makers.

Microprocessor and graphics chip maker this afternoon reported Q4 revenue and profit that both topped Wall Street's expectations, forecast this quarter's revenue higher as well, and once again raised its outlook for revenue growth this year. 

The report sent AMD shares up 1.5% in late trading. 

CEO Dr. Lisa Su called it "another record quarter as revenue grew 54% and operating income doubled year-over-year."

Added Su, "3rd Gen EPYC processor shipments ramped significantly in the quarter as our data center sales more than doubled year-over-year.

"Our business significantly accelerated in 2021, growing faster than the market based on our leadership products and consistent execution," she added.

Revenue in the three months ended in September rose to $4.3 billion, yielding a net profit of 73 cents a share, excluding some costs.

Analysts had been modeling $4.11 billion and net profit of 66 cents per share.

AMD's sales from PC and graphics products rose 44%, year over year, to $2.4 billion, helped by double-digit shipment growth, quarter to quarter, of the company's Ryzen 5000 processor. AMD said its Threadripper chips benefitted from "strong" growth in workstation computers in the quarter.

Graphics chips were boosted by AMD's work on the Oak Ridge National Laboratory exascale system called Frontier. "Data center graphics revenue more than doubled year-over-year and quarter-over-quarter led by shipments of our new AMD CDNA 2 GPUs for the Frontier exascale supercomputer at Oak Ridge National Laboratory," Su noted in prepared remarks.

Su said the company's third generation of its EPYC microprocessor for servers is "ramping" faster than the previous two generations, helped by cloud deployments by Microsoft's Azure and by Google's GCP, as well as new business with Netflix, Cloudflare, and Vimeo. 

"Enterprise growth was particularly strong in the quarter," for EPYC, said Su, including systems by Dell, Lenovo, and Cisco. 

Gross profit margin in the quarter rose to 48% from 44% a year earlier, and was consistent with the 48% in Q2, on a non-GAAP basis. 

For the current quarter, the company sees revenue of $4.4 billion to $4.6 billion. That compares to consensus for $4.25 billion and a 68-cent profit per share.

For the full year, the company sees revenue rising 65%. That is up from the prior forecast in July of "approximately 60%."

AMD maintained an outlook for its full-year gross profit margin to come in at 48%.

Su said AMD was managing to weather the global supply chain crunch. "Our supply chain team has executed extremely well in a challenging environment, delivering incremental supply throughout the year supporting our strong revenue growth," she said. "We are also investing significantly to secure additional capacity to support our long-term growth."

Regarding the company's pending acqusiition of programmable logic maker Xilinx, Su said the deal is on track to close as expected at the end of this year. "We are making good progress towards securing the required regulatory approvals," said Su.