Advanced Micro Devices is having a milestone year. It’s celebrating the 50th anniversary since the Santa Clara, California based company was founded. And it’s the 5th year anniversary since Lisa Su became CEO staging a remarkable turnaround of the struggling semiconductor company.
When I spoke with Su recently, she said, “We’re gaining share and market share in our world is very very important. We’re seeing much more adoption across both consumer and commercial channels. So we’re very excited about not just what we’ve done in 2019, but looking forward into 2020 and beyond.”
Su announced earnings at the end of October, it matched Wall Street’s estimates for the third quarter but came up short on sales. But on a year-over-year basis, AMD earnings rose 38 percent while revenues were up 9 percent, reinforcing AMD’s status as a tech powerhouse.
Since Su took charge in 2015, she has turned steep losses into profits thanks to a robust pipeline of high performance computing processors that AMD sells to tech titans including Amazon (AMZN), Google (GOOG), Microsoft(MSFT), Oracle (ORCL) and Twitter (TWTR).
AMD’s powerful processors are not only used in PCs and data centers, but in the popular gaming consoles of Microsoft’s Xbox and Sony’s PlayStation. Su says AMD is working with both companies on their next generation consoles and she predicts “2020 is going to be a big year for consoles.”
Wall Street investors have rewarded AMD. The stock skyrocketed 900 percent since Su became CEO. So far in 2019, AMD stock is up nearly 80 percent—the best performing stock in the S & P 500. Moreover, the company rejoined the Fortune 500 list of the biggest companies in America after dropping off four years ago.
For now, it looks like nothing is stopping Su from reaching even bigger technology milestones. Despite economic forecasts predicting a recession, Su is emphatic when she says, “we are absolutely still hiring.” Trade tensions in China? She admits that she is “watching very carefully” the trade dispute, but tells her employees in China, “Control the things we can control. Our job is to put out great products.”
Su is laser-focused on where she wants to take AMD by 2025 when she will reach her 10th year as CEO. “What I like to always say is that the best is yet to come,” she says, beaming. “Our goal is to really push the envelope.”