Taking a look at ICHR's new outlook, it guided for Q1 EPS of $0.57 vs. the $0.56 Capital IQ Consensus and revenue of $148.7 million compared to the $146.32 million consensus. Rewinding back to its Q4 report on February 9, ICHR guided for Q1 EPS of $0.52-$0.58 and revenue of $140-$150 million. That guidance was well ahead of consensus estimates at that time ($0.50/$133.15 million). The fact that it is tracking towards the high end of its guidance, that was already far ahead of estimates, is a good indicator of just how strong business is. On a growth basis, this equates to robust year/year revenue growth of 103%.
ICHR also provided impressive upside guidance for Q2, seeing revenue of $152-$162 million vs. the $139.8 million consensus. At the mid-point, this guidance reflects year/year growth of 65%. In the guidance press release, management didn't provide any commentary regarding the outlook. However, it did announce that its 1Q17 results would be released on May 11 with a conference call to follow at 4:30 ET.
Also, looking back at recent quarterly results and listening to the earnings call for both ICHR and LRCX, it's clear that there are a couple main catalysts driving this growth. First, there is a robust and ongoing ramp of 3D NAND products. Demand for NAND in the solid state drive (SSD) and embedded markets continues to be very healthy. On LRCX's Q3 conference call, it stated that its customers are investing in new 3D wafers and are entering new 3D technology conversions. Also, the continuing recovery of DRAM has been a positive factor for both companies. And looking ahead, ICHR believes that it is still in early days in terms of the technology inflection points with multiple pattering and FinFET.
In sum, the semicap market is red-hot right now and there are a number of growth catalysts ahead that should continue to drive solid growth for ICHR and its customers.