Is Netlist, Inc. (OTCMKTS:NLST) Signalling Small-Cap Chip Strength?

Is Netlist, Inc. (OTCMKTS:NLST) Signalling Small-Cap Chip Strength?


Shares of memory play Netlist, Inc. (OTCMKTS:NLST) have been leaking higher in what appears to be an accelerating trend following the company’s report of its Q3 financial data. Given the weakness in the broad chip space of late, we take notice of that action and suggest you should, too.

According to the release, revenues for the third quarter ended September 29, 2018 were $7.2 million, compared to revenues of $9.0 million for the quarter ended September 30, 2017.  Gross profit for the quarter ended September 29, 2018 was $0.6 million, or 8.1% of revenues, compared to a gross profit of $0.7 million, or 8.0% of revenues, for the quarter ended September 30, 2017.

Netlist, Inc. (OTCMKTS:NLST) frames itself as a company that designs, manufactures, and sells modular memory subsystems for the server, high-performance computing, and communications markets worldwide.

It offers Hybri dual in-line memory module (DIMM), a storage class memory product, which unifies dynamic random access memory (DRAM)and NAND flash in a plug-and-play module delivering terabyte storage capacities operating at nanosecond memory speeds.

The company also provides nonvolatile (NV) memory products, such as EXPRESSvault PCIe, a plug-and-play memory card, which offers data acceleration and data protection for server appliances; NVvault DDR3 NVDIMM comprising data acceleration and data protection in a joint electron device engineering council (JEDEC) standard DD3 interface for integration into industry-standard server and storage solutions; NVvault DDR4 NVDIMM, which provides data acceleration and data protection in a JEDEC standard DDR4 interface; and specialty DIMMs and embedded flash products for use in data center and industrial applications.

In addition, it resells Samsung products; and sells component inventory of DRAM ICs and NAND flash to distributors and other users of memory integrated circuits. The company markets and sells its products primarily to original equipment manufacturers through a direct sales force and a network of independent sales representatives. Netlist, Inc. was founded in 2000 and is headquartered in Irvine, California.

According to company materials, “Netlist provides high-performance SSDs and modular memory subsystems to enterprise customers in diverse industries. Flagship products NVvault and EXPRESSvault enable customers to accelerate data in their servers and storage and reliably protect enterprise-level cache, metadata and log data in the event of a system failure or power outage. HybriDIMM, Netlist’s next-generation storage class memory product, addresses the growing need for real-time analytics in Big Data applications, in-memory databases, high-performance computing and advanced data storage solutions. Netlist also manufactures and provides a line of specialty and legacy memory products to storage customers, appliance customers, system builders and cloud and datacenter customers. Netlist holds a portfolio of patents, many seminal, in the areas of hybrid memory, storage class memory, rank multiplication and load reduction.”

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As noted above, NLST just announced its Q3 numbers. Traders will note 80% tacked on to share pricing for the stock in the past month. Furthermore, the listing has seen a growing influx of trading interest, with the stock’s recent average trading volume running 13% above its longer-run average levels.

“During the third quarter we received a favorable ruling from the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) as part of our case against SK hynix which targets billions of dollars of unlicensed server memory products. The ITC order provides momentum as we commence trials in Germany next month and in Washington D.C. at the ITC early next year,” said Netlist’s Chief Executive Officer, C.K. Hong.

“Bottom line performance in the quarter highlights improved product margins sequentially and ongoing operational cost controls offset by increased legal expenses associated with the upcoming trials.”

Currently trading at a market capitalization of $82.16M, NLST has a significant war chest ($19.4M) of cash on the books, which stands against about $13.1M in total current liabilities. One should also note that debt has been growing over recent quarters. NLST is pulling in trailing 12-month revenues of $33M. However, the company is seeing declines on the top-line on a quarterly y/y basis, with revenues falling at -20.1%. We will update the story again soon as further details emerge. Sign-up for continuing coverage on shares of $NLST stock, as well as other hot stock picks, get our free newsletter today and get our next breakout pick!

Disclosure: we hold no position in $NLST, either long or short, and we have not been compensated for this article.

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