Broadcom (AVGO) Q2 2024 Earnings Call Transcript

Broadcom (AVGO) Q2 2024 Earnings Call Transcript

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Broadcom (NASDAQ: AVGO)
Q2 2024 Earnings Call
Jun 12, 2024, 5:00 p.m. ET

Contents:

  • Prepared Remarks

  • Questions and Answers

  • Call Participants

Prepared Remarks:

Operator

Welcome to Broadcom Inc. second quarter fiscal year 2024 financial results conference call. At this time, for opening remarks and introductions, I would like to turn the call over to Ji Yoo, head of investor relations of Broadcom Inc.

Ji YooDirector, Investor Relations

Thank you, operator, and good afternoon, everyone. Joining me on today’s call are Hock Tan, president and CEO; Kirsten Spears, chief financial officer; and Charlie Kawwas, president, Semiconductor Solutions Group. Broadcom distributed a press release and financial tables after the market closed, describing our financial performance for the second quarter of fiscal year 2024. If you did not receive a copy, you may obtain the information from the investors section of Broadcom’s website at broadcom.com.

This conference call is being webcast live, and an audio replay of the call can be accessed for one year through the investors section of Broadcom’s website. During the prepared comments, Hock and Kirsten will be providing details of our second quarter fiscal year 2024 results, guidance for our fiscal year 2024, as well as commentary regarding the business environment. We’ll take questions after the end of our prepared comments. Please refer to our press release today and our recent filings with the SEC for information on the specific risk factors that could cause our actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking statements made on this call.

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In addition to U.S. GAAP reporting, Broadcom reports certain financial measures on a non-GAAP basis. A reconciliation between GAAP and non-GAAP measures is included in the tables attached to today’s press release. Comments made during today’s call will primarily refer to our non-GAAP financial results.

I’ll now turn the call over to Hock.

Hock E. TanPresident and Chief Executive Officer

Thank you, Ji, and thank you, everyone, for joining today. In our fiscal Q2 2024 results, sorry, consolidated net revenue was 12.5 billion, up 43% year on year, as revenue included a full quarter of contribution from VMware. But if we exclude VMware, consolidated revenue was up 12% year on year, and this 12% organic growth in revenue was largely driven by AI revenue, which stepped up 280% year on year to $3.1 billion, more than offsetting continued cyclical weakness in semiconductor revenue from enterprises and telcos. Let me now give you more color on our two reporting segments, beginning with software.

In Q2, infrastructure software segment revenue of 5.3 billion was up 175% year on year and included 2.7 billion in revenue contribution from VMware, up from 2.1 billion in the prior quarter. The integration of VMware is going very well. Since we acquired VMware, we have modernized the product SKUs from over 8,000 disparate SKUs to four core product offerings and simplified the go-to-market flow, eliminating a huge amount of channel conflicts. We are making good progress in transitioning all VMware products to a subscription licensing model.

And since closing the deal, we have actually signed up close to 3,000 of our largest 10,000 customers to enable them to build a self-service virtual private cloud on-prem. Each of these customers typically signed up to a multiyear contract, which we normalize into an annual measure known as annualized booking value or ABV. This metric ABV for VMware products accelerated from $1.2 billion in Q1 to $1.9 billion in Q2. By — for reference, for the consolidated Broadcom software portfolio, ABV grew from 1.9 billion in Q1 to 2.8 billion over the same period in Q2.

Meanwhile, we have integrated SG&A across the entire platform and eliminated redundant functions. Year to date, we have incurred about $2 billion of restructuring and integration costs and drove our spending run rate at VMware to 1.6 billion this quarter from what used to be 2.3 billion per quarter pre-acquisition. We expect spending will continue to decline toward a 1.3 billion run rate exiting Q4, better than our previous $1.4 billion plan, and will likely stabilize at 1.2 billion post-integration. VMware revenue in Q1 was 2.1 billion and grew to 2.7 billion in Q2 and will accelerate toward a 4 billion per quarter run rate.

We, therefore, expect operating margins for VMware to begin to converge toward that of classic Broadcom software by fiscal 2025. Turning to semiconductors. Let me give you more color by end markets. Networking.

Q2 revenue of $3.8 billion grew 44% year on year, representing 53% of semiconductor revenue. This was again driven by strong demand from hyperscalers for both AI networking and custom accelerators. It’s interesting to note that as AI data center clusters continue to deploy, our revenue mix has been shifting toward an increasing proportion of networking. We doubled the number of switches we sold year on year, particularly the Tomahawk 5 and Jericho3, which we deployed successfully in close collaboration with partners like Arista Networks, Dell, Juniper, and Supermicro.

Additionally, we also doubled our shipments of PCI Express switches and NICs in the AI back-end fabric. We’re leading the rapid transition of optical interconnects in AI data centers to 800 gigabit bandwidth, which is driving accelerated growth for our DSPs, optical lasers, and PIN diodes. And we are not standing still. Together with these same partners, we are developing the next-generation switches, DSP, and optics that will drive the ecosystem toward 1.6-terabit connectivity to scale out larger AI accelerated clusters.

Talking of AI accelerators. You may know, our hyperscale customers are accelerating their investments to scale up the performance of these clusters. And to that end, we have just been awarded the next-generation custom AI accelerators for these hyperscale customers of ours. Networking these AI accelerators is very challenging, but the technology does exist today in Broadcom, where the deepest and broadest understanding of what it takes for complex large workloads to be scaled out in an AI fabric.

Proven point, seven of the largest eight AI clusters in deployment today use Broadcom Ethernet solutions. Next year, we expect all mega-scaled GPU deployments to be on Ethernet. We expect the strength in AI to continue. And because of that, we now expect networking revenue to grow 40% year on year, compared to our prior guidance of over 35% growth.

Moving to wireless. Q2 wireless revenue of 1.6 billion grew 2% year on year, while seasonally down 19% quarter on quarter, and represents 22% of semiconductor revenue. And in fiscal ’24, helped by content increases, we reiterate our previous guidance for wireless revenue to be essentially flat year on year. This trend is wholly consistent with the — with our continued engagement with our North American customers, which is deep, strategic, and multiyear, and represents all of our wireless business.

Next, our Q2 server storage connectivity revenue was 824 million, or 11% of semiconductor revenue, down 27% year on year. We believe the Q2 was the bottom in server storage. And based on updated demand forecasts and bookings, we expect a modest recovery in the second half of the year. And accordingly, we forecast fiscal ’24 server storage revenue to decline around the 20% range year on year.

Moving on to broadband. Q2 revenue declined 39% year on year to $730 million and represented 10% of semiconductor revenue. Broadband remains weak on a continued pause in telco and service provider spending. We expect Broadcom to bottom in the second half of the year, with a recovery in 2025.

Accordingly, we are revising our outlook for fiscal ’24 broadband revenue to be down high 30s year on year from our prior guidance for a decline of just over 30% year on year. Finally, Q2 industrial resale of $234 million declined 10% year on year. And for fiscal ’24, we now expect industrial resale to be down double-digit percentage year on year, compared to our prior guidance for high single-digit decline. So, to sum it all up, here’s what we are seeing.

For fiscal ’24, we expect revenue from AI to be much stronger at over $11 billion. Non-AI semiconductor revenue has bottomed in Q2 and is likely to recover modestly for the second half of fiscal ’24. On infrastructure software, we’re making very strong progress in integrating VMware and accelerating its growth. Pulling all these three key factors together, we are raising our fiscal ’24 revenue guidance to $51 billion.

And with that, let me turn the call over to Kirsten.

Kirsten M. SpearsChief Financial Officer

Thank you, Hock. Let me now provide additional detail on our Q2 financial performance, which included a full quarter of contribution from VMware. Consolidated revenue was 12.5 billion for the quarter, up 43% from a year ago. Excluding the contribution from VMware, Q2 revenue increased 12% year on year.

Gross margins were 76.2% of revenue in the quarter. Operating expenses were 2.4 billion and R&D was 1.5 billion, both up year on year, primarily due to the consolidation of VMware. Q2 operating income was 7.1 billion and was up 32% from a year ago, with operating margin at 57% of revenue. Excluding transition costs, operating profit of 7.4 billion was up 36% from a year ago, with operating margin of 59% of revenue.

Adjusted EBITDA was 7.4 billion or 60% of revenue. This figure excludes 149 million of depreciation. Now, a review of the P&L for our two segments, starting with semiconductors. Revenue for our semiconductor solutions segment was 7.2 billion and represented 58% of total revenue in the quarter.

This was up 6% year on year. Gross margins for our semiconductor solutions segment were approximately 67%, down 370 basis points year on year, driven primarily by a higher mix of custom AI accelerators. Operating expenses increased 4% year on year to 868 million on increased investment in R&D, resulting in semiconductor operating margins of 55%. Now, moving on to infrastructure software.

Revenue for infrastructure software was 5.3 billion, up 170% year on year, primarily due to the contribution of VMware, and represented 42% of revenue. Gross margin for infrastructure software were 88% in the quarter and operating expenses were 1.5 billion in the quarter, resulting in infrastructure software operating margin of 60%. Excluding transition costs, operating margin was 64%. Now, moving on to cash flow.

Free cash flow in the quarter was 4.4 billion and represented 36% of revenues. Excluding cash used for restructuring and integration of 830 million, free cash flows of 5.3 billion were up 18% year on year and represented 42% of revenue. Free cash flow as a percentage of revenue has declined from 2023 due to higher cash interest expense from debt related to the VMware acquisition and higher cash taxes due to a higher mix of U.S. income and the delay in the reenactment of Section 174.

We spent 132 million on capital expenditures. Days sales outstanding were 40 days in the second quarter, consistent with 41 days in the first quarter. We ended the second quarter with inventory of 1.8 billion, down 4% sequentially. We continue to remain disciplined on how we manage inventory across our ecosystem.

We ended the second quarter with 9.8 billion of cash and 74 billion of gross debt. The weighted average coupon rate and years to maturity of our 48 billion in fixed rate debt is 3.5% and 8.2 years, respectively. The weighted average coupon rate and years to maturity of our 28 billion in floating rate debt is 6.6% and 2.8 years, respectively. During the quarter, we repaid 2 billion of our floating rate debt, and we intend to maintain this quarterly repayment of debt throughout fiscal 2024.

Turning to capital allocation. In the quarter, we paid stockholders 2.4 billion of cash dividends based on a quarterly common stock cash dividend of $5.25 per share. In Q2, non-GAAP diluted share count was 492 million as the 54 million shares issued for the VMware acquisition were fully weighted in the second quarter. We paid 1.5 billion withholding taxes due on vesting of employee equity, resulting in the elimination of 1.2 million AVGO shares.

Today, we are announcing a 10-for-1 forward stock split of Broadcom’s common stock to make ownership of Broadcom stock more accessible to investors and to employees. Our stockholders of record after the close of market on July 11, 2024 will receive an additional nine shares of common stock after the close of market on July 12th, with trading on a split-adjusted basis expected to commence at market open on July 15, 2024. In Q3, reflecting a post-split basis, we expect share count to be approximately 4.92 billion shares. Now, on to guidance.

We are raising our guidance for fiscal year 2024 consolidated revenue to 51 billion and adjusted EBITDA to 61%. For modeling purposes, please keep in mind that GAAP net income and cash flows in fiscal year 2024 are impacted by restructuring and integration-related cash costs due to the VMware acquisition. That concludes my prepared remarks. Operator, please open up the call for questions.

Questions & Answers:

Operator

Thank you. [Operator instructions] And our first question will come from the line of Vivek Arya with Bank of America. Your line is open.

Vivek AryaBank of America Merrill Lynch — Analyst

Thanks for taking my question. Hock, I would appreciate your perspective on the emerging competition between Broadcom and Nvidia across both accelerators and Ethernet switching. So, on the accelerator side, you know, they are going to launch their Blackwell product, that many of the same customers that you have a very large position in the custom compute. So, I’m curious how you think customers are going to do that allocation decision, just broadly what the visibility is.

And then I think Part B of that is as they launch their Spectrum-X Ethernet switch, do you think that poses an increasing competition for Broadcom in the Ethernet switching side in AI for next year? Thank you.

Hock E. TanPresident and Chief Executive Officer

So, a very interesting question, Vivek. On AI accelerators, I think we are operating on a different, to start with, scale, much as different model. It is — you know, that — the GPUs, which are the AI accelerator of choice on merchant — in a merchant environment, is something that is extremely powerful as a model, and it’s something that Nvidia operates in a very, very effective manner. We don’t even think about competing against them in that space, not in the least.

That’s where they’re very good at and we know where we stand with respect to that. Now, what we do for very selected — or selective hyperscalers is if they have the scale and the skills to try to create silicon solutions, which are AI accelerators, to do particular AI — very complex AI workloads, we’re happy to use our IP portfolio to create those custom ASIC AI accelerator. So, I do not see them as truly competing against each other. And far for me to say I’m trying to position myself to be a competitor on basically GPUs in this market.

We’re not. We are not competitor to them. We don’t try to be either. Now, on networking, maybe that’s different.

But again, they may — people may be approaching it and they may be approaching it from a different angle than we are. We are, as I indicated all along, very deep in Ethernet as we’ve been doing Ethernet for over 25 years, Ethernet networking, and we’ve gone through a lot of market transitions, and we have captured a lot of market transitions from cloud-scale networking to routing and, now, AI. So, it’s a natural extension for us to go into AI. We also recognize that being the AI compute engine of choice in merchant’s — in the ecosystem, which is GPUs, that they are trying to create a platform that is probably end-to-end very integrated.

We take the approach that we don’t do those GPUs, so — but we enable the GPUs to work very well. So, if anything else, we supplement and hopefully complement those GPUs in — with customers who are building bigger and bigger GPU clusters.

Vivek AryaBank of America Merrill Lynch — Analyst

Thank you.

Operator

Thank you. One moment for our next question. And that will come from the line of Ross Seymore with Deutsche Bank. Your line is open.

Ross SeymoreDeutsche Bank — Analyst

Hi, guys. Thanks for letting me ask my question. I want to stick on the AI theme. Hock, the strong growth that you had in the quarter, the 280% year over year, could you delineate a little bit between if that’s the compute offload side versus the connectivity side? And then as you think about the growth for the full year, how are those splits in that realm as well? Are they kind of going hand in hand or is one side growing significantly faster than the other, especially with the — I guess you said the next-generation accelerators are now going to be Broadcom as well?

Hock E. TanPresident and Chief Executive Officer

Well, to answer your question on the mix, you’re right. It’s something we don’t really predict very well, nor understand completely, except in hindsight, because it’s tied, to some extent, to the cadence of deployment of when they put in the AI accelerators versus when they put in the infrastructure that puts it together, the networking. And we don’t really quite understand it 100%. All we know, it used to be 80% accelerators, 20% networking.

It’s now running closer to one-third — two-thirds accelerators, one-third networking. And we’re probably head toward 60-40 by the close of the year.

Ross SeymoreDeutsche Bank — Analyst

Thank you.

Operator

Thank you. One moment for our next question. And that will come from the line of Stacy Rasgon with Bernstein. Your line is open.

Stacy RasgonAllianceBernstein — Analyst

Hi, guys. Thanks for taking my question. I wanted to ask about the $11 billion AI guide. You’d be at 11.6 even if you didn’t grow AI from the current level in the second half.

And it feels to me like you’re not suggesting — that it feels to me like you think you’d growing. So, why wouldn’t that AI number be a lot more than 11.6? It feels like it ought to be. Or am I missing something?

Hock E. TanPresident and Chief Executive Officer

Because I guided just over 8 — over 11 billion, Stacy. It could be what you think it is. You know, it’s — quarterly shipments get sometimes very lumpy, and it depends on rate of deployment. It depends a lot of things.

So, you may be right. You may be — you may get — you may estimate it better than I do, but the general trend trajectory is it’s getting better.

Stacy RasgonAllianceBernstein — Analyst

OK. So, I guess, again, how do I — are you just suggesting that more than 11 billion is sort of like the worst it could be because that would just be flat at the current levels, but you’re also suggesting that things are getting better into the back half so —

Hock E. TanPresident and Chief Executive Officer

Correct.

Stacy RasgonAllianceBernstein — Analyst

OK. So, I guess we’d just take that that’s a very — that — if I’m reading it wrong, that that’s just a very conservative number?

Hock E. TanPresident and Chief Executive Officer

That’s the best forecast I have at this point, Stacy.

Stacy RasgonAllianceBernstein — Analyst

All right. OK, Hock. Thank you. I appreciate it.

Hock E. TanPresident and Chief Executive Officer

Thank you.

Operator

Thank you. One moment for our next question. And that will come from the line of Harlan Sur with J.P. Morgan.

Your line is open.

Harlan SurJPMorgan Chase and Company — Analyst

Yeah. Good afternoon. Thanks for taking my question. Hock, on cloud and AI networking silicon, you know, good to see that the networking mix is steadily increasing.

You know, like clockwork, the Broadcom team has been driving a consistent two-year cadence, right, of new product introductions: Trident, Tomahawk, Jericho family of switching and routing products for the past seven generations. You layer on top of that your GPU, TPU customers are accelerating their cadence of new product introductions and deployments of their products. So, is this also driving faster adoption curve for your latest Tomahawk and Jericho products? And then maybe just as importantly, like clockwork, it’s been two years since you’ve introduced Tomahawk 5 product introduction, right, which if I look back historically means you have silicon and are getting ready to introduce your next-generation three-nanometer Tomahawk 6 products, which would, I think, put you two to three years ahead of your competitors. Can you just give us an update there?

Hock E. TanPresident and Chief Executive Officer

Harlan, you’re pretty, pretty insightful there. Yes, we launched Tomahawk 5, ’23. So, you’re right. By late ’25, the time we should be coming out with Tomahawks 6, which is the 100-terabit switch.

Yes.

Harlan SurJPMorgan Chase and Company — Analyst

And is the — is this acceleration of cadence by your GPU and TPU partners, is that also what’s kind of driving the strong growth in the networking products?

Hock E. TanPresident and Chief Executive Officer

Well, you know what, sometimes, you have to let things take its time. But it’s two-year cadence, so we’re right on. Late ’23 was when we showed it out through our Tomahawk 5, and it adopted — adoption. You’re correct.

With AI, it has been tremendous because of the — it ties in with the need for very large bandwidth in the networking — in the fabric for AI clusters — AI data centers. But regardless, we’ve always targeted Tomahawk 6 to be out two years after that, which should put it into late ’25.

Harlan SurJPMorgan Chase and Company — Analyst

OK. Thank you, Hock.

Operator

Thank you. One moment for our next question. And that will come from the line of Ben Reitzes with Melius. Your line is open.

Ben ReitzesMelius Research — Analyst

Hey. Thanks a lot and congrats on the quarter and guide. Hock, I wanted to talk a little bit more about VMware. Just wanted to clarify if it is, indeed, going better than expectations and how would you characterize, you know, the customer willingness to move to subscription.

And also, just a little more color on Cloud Foundation. You’ve cut the price there and are you seeing that beat expectations? Thanks a lot.

Hock E. TanPresident and Chief Executive Officer

Thanks, and thanks for your kind regards on the quarter. But it’s — as far as VMware is concerned, we’re making good progress. The journey is not over, by any means, but it’s pretty much — very much to expectation. Moving to subscription, hell, VMware — in VMware, we’re very slow compared to, I mean, a lot of other guys, Microsoft, Salesforce, Oracle, who have already been pretty much in subscription.

So, VMware is late in that process, but we’re trying to make up for it by offering it and offering it very, very compelling — in a compelling manner because subscription is the right thing to do, right? It’s a situation where you put out your product, your product offering, and you update it, patch it, but update it feature-wise, everything and its capabilities, on a continual basis, almost like getting your news, on an ongoing basis, subscription online versus getting it in printed manner once a week. That’s how I compare perpetual to subscription. So, it’s very interesting for a lot of people to want to get on. And so, that — to no surprise, we are getting — they are getting on very well.

The big selling point we have, as I indicated, is the fact that we’re not just trying to keep customers kind of stuck on just server or compute virtualization. That’s a great product, great technology, but that’s been out for 20 years. What we are offering now at a very compelling price point, compelling meaning very attractive price point, the whole stack, software stack to use vSphere and its basic fundamental technology to virtualize networking, storage, operation, and management, the entire data center, and create this self-service private cloud. And thanks for saying it, you’re right, and we have priced it down to the point where it’s comparable with just compute virtualization.

So, yes, that’s getting a lot of interest, a lot of attention from the customers we have signed up who would like to deploy — the ability to deploy private cloud — their own private cloud on-prem as a nice complement, maybe even alternative or hybrid, to public clouds. That’s the selling point, and we’re getting a lot of interest from our customers in doing that.

Ben ReitzesMelius Research — Analyst

Great. And it’s on track for 4 billion by the fourth quarter still, which is reiterated?

Hock E. TanPresident and Chief Executive Officer

Well, I didn’t give a specific time frame, did I? But it’s on track, as we see this process growing, toward a $4 billion quarter.

Ben ReitzesMelius Research — Analyst

OK. Thanks a lot, Hock.

Hock E. TanPresident and Chief Executive Officer

Thanks.

Operator

Thank you. One moment for our next question. And that will come from the line of Toshiya Hari with Goldman Sachs. Your line is open.

Toshiya HariGoldman Sachs — Analyst

Hi. Thank you so much for taking the question. I guess kind of a follow-up to the previous question on your software business, Hock, you seem to have pretty good visibility into hitting that $4 billion run rate over the medium term, perhaps. You also talked about your operating margins in that business converging to classic Broadcom levels.

I know, you know, the integration is not done and you’re still kind of in debt paydown mode, but how should we think about your growth strategy beyond VMware? Do you think you have enough drivers both on the semiconductor side and the software side to continue to drive growth or is M&A still an option beyond VMware? Thank you.

Hock E. TanPresident and Chief Executive Officer

Interesting question, and you’re right. I — you know what, as I indicated in my remarks, even without the contribution from VMware, this past quarter, we’re — you know, we have AI helping us, but we have non-AI semiconductors sort of bottoming out. We’re able to show 12% organic growth year on year. So, almost — I have to say — so do we need to rush to buy another company? The answer is no, but all options are always open because we’re trying to create the best value for our shareholders who have entrusted us with the capital to do that.

So, I would not discount that alternative because our strategy, our long-term model has always been to grow through a combination of acquisition, but also on those — on the assets we acquire to really improve, invest, and operate them better to show organic growth as well. But again, organic growth, often enough, is determined very much by how fast your market would grow. So, we do look toward acquisitions now and then.

Toshiya HariGoldman Sachs — Analyst

Great. Thank you.

Operator

Thank you. One moment for our next question. And that will come from the line of Blayne Curtis with Jefferies. Your line is open.

Blayne CurtisJefferies — Analyst

Hey. Thanks for taking my question. I wanted to ask you, Hock, on the networking business kind of ex AI. Obviously, you know, I think there’s an inventory correction the whole industry is seeing.

But just kind of curious, I don’t think you mentioned that it was at a bottom. So, just the perspective, I think it’s down about 60% year over year. Is that business finding a bottom? I know you said, overall, the whole semi business should — non-AI should see recovery. Are you expecting any there and any perspective on just customer inventory levels in that segment?

Hock E. TanPresident and Chief Executive Officer

We see it behaving — I didn’t particularly call it out, obviously, because, more than anything else, I kind of link it very much to server storage, non-AI that is, and we called server storage as — at the bottom, Q2, and we call it to recover modestly second half of the year. We see the same thing in networking, which is a combination of enterprise networking, as well as the hyperscalers who run their traditional workloads on those. So, it’s hard to figure it out sometimes, but it is. So, we see the same trajectory as we are calling out on server storage.

Blayne CurtisJefferies — Analyst

OK. Thank you.

Operator

Thank you. One moment for our next question. And that will come from the line of Timothy Arcuri with UBS. Your line is open.

Mr. Arcuri, your line is open.

Timothy ArcuriUBS — Analyst

Hi. Sorry. Thanks. Hock, is there a way to sort of map GPU demand back to your AI networking opportunity? I think I’ve heard you say in the past that if you spend $10 billion on GPU compute, you need to spend another $10 billion on other infrastructure, most of which is networking.

So, I’m just kind of wondering if when you see these big GPU, you know, numbers, is there a sort of a rule of thumb that you use to map it back to what the opportunity will be for you? Thanks.

Hock E. TanPresident and Chief Executive Officer

There is, but it’s so complex, I stopped creating such a model, Tim. I’m serious. But there is because one would say that for — yeah, for every — you know, you almost say, for every $1 billion you spend on GPU, you probably would spend probably on networking. And if you include the optical interconnects as part of it, though we are not totally in that market, except for the components like DSPs, lasers, PIN diodes that go into those high bandwidth optical connects.

But if you just take optical connects in totality, switching, all the networking components that goes into — attaches itself to clustering a bunch of GPUs, you probably would say that about 25% of the value of the GPU goes to networking, the rest of networking. Now, not entirely all of it is my available market. I don’t do the optical connects, but I do the few components I talked about in it. But roughly, the simple way to look at it is probably about 25%, maybe 30% of all these infrastructure components is kind of attached to the GPU value point itself.

But having said that, it’s never — one, we’re never that precise that deployment is the same way. So, you may see the deployment of GPUs or the purchase of GPU much earlier and the networking comes later or sometimes less, the other way around, which is why you’re seeing the mix going on within my AI revenue mix. But typically, you run toward that range over time.

Timothy ArcuriUBS — Analyst

Perfect, Hock. Thank you so much.

Operator

Thank you. One moment for our next question. And that will come from the line of Thomas O’Malley with Barclays. Your line is open.

Tom O’MalleyBarclays — Analyst

Hey, guys. Thanks for taking my question and nice results. But my question regards to the custom ASIC AI business. Hock, you’ve had a long run here of a very successful business, particularly with one customer.

If you look in the market today, you have a new entrant who’s playing with different customers. And I know that you said historically, that’s not really a direct customer to you. But could you talk about what differentiates you from the new entrant in the market as of late? And then there’s been profitability questions around the sustainability of gross margins longer term. Can you talk about if you see any increased competition and if there’s really areas that you would deem more or less defensible in your profile today and if you would see kind of that additional entrant, you know, maybe attack any of those in the future?

Hock E. TanPresident and Chief Executive Officer

Let me take the second part first, which is our AI accelerate — custom AI accelerator business. It is a very profitable business. And let me put the scale in — look — examine it from a model point of view. I mean, you know, each of these AI accelerators, no different from a GPU.

The way this — we do — these large language models get run computing, get run on these accelerators. No one single accelerator, as you know, can run these big large language models. You need multiple of it, no matter how powerful those accelerators are. But also — and the way the models are run, there’s a lot of memory — access to memory requirements.

So, each of these accelerator comes with a large amount of cache memory, as you call it, what you guys probably now know as HBM, high bandwidth memory, specialized for AI accelerators of GPUs. So, we supply both in our custom business. And the logic side of it, the — you know, where you — where the compute function is on doing the chips, the margin there are no different than the margin in any — in most of any of our semiconductor silicon chip business. But when you attach to it a huge amount of memory — memory comes from a third party.

There are a few memory makers who make this specialized thing. We don’t do margin stacking on that. So, buy — almost buying basic math will dilute the margin of these AI accelerators when you sell them with memory, which we do. It does push up revenue somewhat higher, but it is — dilute the margin.

But regardless, the spend, the R&D, the opex that goes to support this as a percent of the revenue, which is higher revenue, is so much less. So, on an operating margin level, this is easily as profitable, if not more profitable, given the scale that each of those custom AI accelerator can go up to. It’s even better than our normal operating margin scale. So, that’s the return on investment that attracts and keeps us going at this game.

And this is more than a game. It’s a very difficult business. And to answer your first question, there’s only one Broadcom, period.

Tom O’MalleyBarclays — Analyst

Thanks, Hock.

Operator

Thank you. One moment for our next question. And that will come from the line of Karl Ackerman with BNP. Your line is open.

Karl AckermanExane BNP Paribas — Analyst

Yes. Thank you. Good afternoon. Hock, your networking switch portfolio with Tomahawk and Jericho chipsets allow hyperscalers to build AI clusters using either a switch-scheduled or endpoint-scheduled network; and that, of course, is unique among competitors.

But as hyperscalers seek to deploy their own unique AI clusters, are you seeing a growing mix of white box networking switch deployments? I ask because while your custom silicon business continues to broaden, it would be helpful to better understand the growing mix of your 11 billion AI networking portfolio combined this year. Thank you.

Hock E. TanPresident and Chief Executive Officer

Well, let me have Charlie address this question. He’s the expert.

Charlie B. KawwasPresident, Semiconductor Solutions

Yeah. Thank you, Hock. So, two quick things on this. One is the — you’re exactly right that the portfolio we have is quite unique in providing that flexibility.

And by the way, this is exactly why Hock and his statements earlier on mentioned that seven out of the top eight hyperscalers use our portfolio, and they use it specifically because it provides that flexibility. So, whether you have an architecture that’s based on an endpoint and you want to actually build your platform that way or you want that switching to happen in the fabric itself, that’s why we have the full end-to-end portfolio. So, that, actually, has been a proven differentiator for us. And then on top of that, we’ve been working, as you know, to provide a complete network operating system that’s open on top of that using SONiC and SAI, which has been deployed in many of the hyperscalers.

And so, the combination of the portfolio, plus the stack, really differentiates the solution that we can offer to these hyperscalers. And if they decide to build their own NICs, their own accelerators are custom or use standard products, whether it’s from Broadcom or other, that platform, that portfolio of infrastructure switching gives you that full flexibility.

Karl AckermanExane BNP Paribas — Analyst

Thank you.

Operator

Thank you. One moment for our next question. And that will come from the line of C.J. Muse with Cantor Fitzgerald.

Your line is open.

C.J. MuseCantor Fitzgerald — Analyst

Yeah. Good afternoon. Thank you for taking the question. I was hoping to ask two-part software question.

So, excluding VMware, your Brocade, CA, and Symantec business now running 500 million higher for the last two quarters. So, curious, is that the new sustainable run rate, or were there one-time events in both January and April that we should be considering? And then the second question is, as you think about VMware Cloud Foundation adoption, are you seeing any sort of crowding out of spending like other software guys are seeing as they repurpose their budgets to IT, or is that business so less discretionary that it’s just not an impact for you? Thanks so much.

Hock E. TanPresident and Chief Executive Officer

Well, on the second one, I don’t know about any crowding out, to be honest. It’s not — what we’re offering, obviously, is not something that they would like to use themselves — to be able to do themselves, which is they are already spending on building their own on-prem data centers. And typical approach people take, a lot of enterprises take historically, continued today, than most people do, a lot of people do is they have best of breed. What I mean was they create a data center that is compute as a separate category, best compute there is, and they often enough use vSphere for compute virtualization due to improved productivity, but best of breed there.

Then they have best of breed on networking and best of breed on storage with a common management operations layer, which sometimes — very often is also VMware vRealize. And what we’re trying to say is this mixed bag — and what they see is this mixed bag best-of-breed data center, very heterogeneous, is not grieving that — it’s not a highly resilient data center. I mean, you have a mixed bag, so it goes down. Where do you find quickly root cause? Everybody is pointing fingers at the other.

So, you got a problem, not very resilient and not necessarily secure between bare metal in one side and software on the other side. So, it’s a natural thinking on the part of many CIOs we talk to to say, hey, I want to create one common platform, as opposed to just best of breed of each. So, that gets us into that. So, if it’s a greenfield, that’s not bad.

They started from scratch. If it’s a brownfield, that means they have existing data centers, trying to upgrade, it’s — that’s — sometimes that’s more challenging for us to get that adopted. So, I’m not sure there’s a crowding out here. There’s some competition obviously on Greenfield where they can spend a budget on an entire platform versus best of breed.

But on the existing data center where you’re trying to upgrade, that’s a trickier thing to do, and it cuts the other way as well for us. But — so that’s how I see it. So, in that sense, best answer is I don’t think we are seeing a level of crowding out that is — any and that’s very significant for me to mention. In terms of the revenue mix, no, Brocade is having a great, great field year, so far, and still chugging along.

But will that sustain? Hell no. You know that. Brocade goes through cycles, like most enterprise purchases. So, we’re enjoying it while it lasts.

C.J. MuseCantor Fitzgerald — Analyst

Thank you.

Hock E. TanPresident and Chief Executive Officer

Thanks.

Operator

Thank you. And we do have time for one final question. And that will come from the line of William Stein with Truist Securities. Your line is open.

William SteinTruist Securities — Analyst

Great. Thanks for squeezing me in. Hock, congrats on the — you know, yet another great quarter and strong outlook in AI. I also want to ask about something you mentioned with VMware.

In your prepared remarks, you highlighted that you’ve eliminated a tremendous amount of channel conflict. I’m hoping you can linger on this a little bit and clarify maybe what you did and specifically also what you did in the heritage Broadcom software business, where, I think, historically, you’d shied away from the channel, and there was an idea that, perhaps, you’d reintroduce those products to the channel through a more unified approach using VMware’s channel partners or resources. So, any sort of clarification here, I think, would be helpful. Thank you.

Hock E. TanPresident and Chief Executive Officer

Yeah. Thank you. That’s a great question. Yeah, VMware taught me a few things.

There are 300,000 customers, 300,000. That’s pretty amazing. And we look at it. I know, under CA, we took a position that let’s pick an A-list strategic guys and focus on it.

I can’t do that in VMware. I have to approach it differently. And we start — and I start to learn the value of very strong bunch of partners they have, which are a network of distributors and something like 15,000 VARs, value-added resellers, supported with these distributors. So, we have doubled down and invested in this reseller network in a big way for VMware.

And it’s a great move, I think. But six months into the game, but we are seeing a lot more velocity out of it. Now, these resellers, having said that, tend to be very focused on a very long tail of that 300,000 customers. The largest 10,000 customers of VMware are large enterprises who tend to — you know, they are very large enterprises, the largest banks, the largest healthcare companies.

And their view is I want very bespoke service support engineering solutions from us. So, we created a direct approach, supplemented with their VAR of choice, where they need to . But on the long tail of 300,000 customers, they get a lot of services through from the resellers, value-added resellers, and so in their way. So, we now — and strengthen that whole network of resellers so that they can go direct, managed — supported financially with distributors.

And we don’t try to challenge those guys unless the customers — all — it all boils down to the end of the day, the customers choose where they like to be supported. And so, we kind of simplify this, together with the number of SKUs there are. In the past, unlike what we’re trying to do here, everybody is a part — I mean, you’re talking a full range of partners and everybody — and whoever, you know, makes the biggest deal gets the lowest — the partner that makes the biggest deal gets the biggest discount, the lowest price. And they’re out there basically kind of creating a lot of channel chaos and conflict in the marketplace.

Here, we don’t. The customers are aware they can take it direct from VMware through their direct sales force or they can easily move to the reseller to get it that way. And as a third alternative, which we offer, if they chose not — they want to run their applications on VMware and they want to run it efficiently on the full stack, they have a choice now of going to a hosted environment managed by a network of managed service providers, which we set up globally, that will run the infrastructure, invest and operate the infrastructure, and these enterprise customers just run their workloads in and get it as a service, basically VMware as a service. That’s the third alternative.

And we are clear to make it very distinct and differentiate it for our end-use customers. They are available to all three. It’s how they choose to consume our technology.

William SteinTruist Securities — Analyst

Great. Thank you.

Operator

Thank you. I would now like to hand the call over to Ji Yoo, head of investor relations for any closing remarks.

Ji YooDirector, Investor Relations

Thank you, Sherry. Broadcom currently plans to report its earnings for the third quarter of fiscal ’24 after close of market on Thursday, September 5, 2024. A public webcast of Broadcom’s earnings conference call will follow at 2 p.m. Pacific Time.

That will conclude our earnings call today. Thank you all for joining. Operator, you may end the call.

Operator

[Operator signoff]

Duration: 0 minutes

Call participants:

Ji YooDirector, Investor Relations

Hock E. TanPresident and Chief Executive Officer

Kirsten M. SpearsChief Financial Officer

Vivek AryaBank of America Merrill Lynch — Analyst

Hock TanPresident and Chief Executive Officer

Ross SeymoreDeutsche Bank — Analyst

Stacy RasgonAllianceBernstein — Analyst

Harlan SurJPMorgan Chase and Company — Analyst

Ben ReitzesMelius Research — Analyst

Toshiya HariGoldman Sachs — Analyst

Blayne CurtisJefferies — Analyst

Timothy ArcuriUBS — Analyst

Tim ArcuriUBS — Analyst

Tom O’MalleyBarclays — Analyst

Karl AckermanExane BNP Paribas — Analyst

Charlie B. KawwasPresident, Semiconductor Solutions

C.J. MuseCantor Fitzgerald — Analyst

William SteinTruist Securities — Analyst

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Broadcom (AVGO) Q2 2024 Earnings Call Transcript was originally published by The Motley Fool