What can we conclude from INTC’s interest in acquiring ALTR?
–when I became interested in INTC as a stock a couple of years ago, it seemed to me that the firm could be viewed as having two businesses–a high-growth one selling servers and a low-growth, cash cow one selling chips for PCs. At the time, I thought the server business alone more than justified the then stock price, and that the PC business was mainly important for its contribution to overhead and its free cash flow generation. A desire to acquire ALTR seems to confirm that this is also INTC management’s view.
–good companies periodically reinvent themselves. After a period of stagnation, this appears to be what INTC is doing
–the threat of low power servers run by ARM chips is serious
–my guess is that a bid will take the form of all or mostly INTC stock. An all or largely cash offer would imply either that INTC thinks its shares are deeply undervalued, that debt financing is too ridiculously cheap to pass up, or that long-suffering ALTR shareholders want to declare investment victory and move on.
–an INTC-ALTR merger spells trouble for Xilinx (XLNX), the main competitor to ALTR
–the main source of value in ALTR is its software. Assessing that, thorough accumulated R&D spending, is the key.