Friday October 22, 2021
Component shortage slows Intel
As a large semiconductor supplier, Intel should actually benefit from the current chip bottlenecks. But higher prices for processors play the group only to a limited extent in the cards, because manufacturers lack other components. This has a direct impact on the demand for Intel chips.
The semiconductor giant Intel is also being held back by the global shortage of components. For example, Intel was able to sell fewer chips for notebooks in the past quarter – because the manufacturers lacked other components to complete the devices. Overall, the chip company posted growth in sales and profit at the same time. However, Intel scared investors with the announcement that the business would initially run less profitably in view of the high investments in new plants. The stock fell in after-hours US trading on Thursday by around five percent.
The sales of the Intel division, to which the business with PC chips belongs, fell year-on-year by 2 percent to 9.7 billion dollars (8.3 billion euros). That number doesn’t tell the full story, however. Because the group delivered 14 percent fewer processors for notebooks in a year-on-year comparison. The effects on Intel sales were cushioned at the same time by a hefty price increase of ten percent. For desktop computers, however, Intel sold 16 percent more chips – at 4 percent higher prices. At the same time, Intel is losing Apple as a customer – the company is gradually switching its Mac computers to processors it has developed itself.
Intel’s business with chips for data centers grew by 10 percent to 6.5 billion dollars – because investments would have increased with the economic recovery after the low point of the Corona crisis. The division was faced with headwinds from the crackdown on video games in China – less data is flowing through local data centers and expansion is seen as less urgent. Intel was convinced that it would only be a temporary effect.
Delays in new processes
Intel’s group sales increased in the past quarter by 5 percent to 19.2 billion dollars. The bottom line was a profit of 6.8 billion dollars (5.85 billion euros) left – a jump of 60 percent. Like other giants in the industry, Intel is currently investing heavily in expanding capacities in chip production. However, these billions in investments will only take effect in a few years. At the same time, the high expenditures will initially make the business less profitable, emphasized CEO Pat Gelsinger.
Intel recently came under increasing pressure. Among other things, due to the delays in new processes, the arch-rival AMD was able to gain ground in the business with chips for data centers, but also gain ground in the PC market. The new boss Gelsinger recently presented future technologies with which the group intends to regain the top position in chip production in a few years. Intel also wants to act as a contract manufacturer for other chip providers.