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Qorvo Q1 2024 Earnings Call Transcript


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Participants

Corporate Executives

  • Douglas DeLieto
    Vice President, Investor Relations
  • Robert Bruggeworth
    Chief Executive Officer
  • Grant Brown
    Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer
  • Dave Fullwood
    Senior Vice President of Sales & Marketing

Analysts

  • Karl Ackerman, BNP Paribas Securities Corp. North America
  • Ruben Roy, Stifel, Nicolaus & Company, Inc. (Research)
  • Gary Mobley, Wells Fargo Securities
  • Vivek Arya, Bank of America Merrill Lynch
  • Unidentified Participant,
  • Christopher Rolland, Susquehanna Financial Group
  • Edward Snyder, Charter Equity Research

Presentation

Operator

Greetings and welcome to Qorvo Inc. Q1 2024 Conference Call. At this time, all participants are in a listen-only mode. A brief question-and-answer session will follow the formal presentation [Operator Instructions]. As a reminder, this conference is being recorded.

It is now my pleasure to introduce your host, Douglas DeLieto, Vice-President, Investor Relations. Thank you, Mr. DeLieto. You may begin.

Douglas DeLieto
Vice President, Investor Relations at Qorvo

Thanks very much. Hello, everybody, and welcome to Qorvo's fiscal 2024 first quarter earnings conference call. This call will include forward-looking statements that involve risk factors that could cause our actual results to differ materially from management's current expectations. We encourage you to review the safe-harbor statement contained in the earnings release published today, as well as the risk factors associated with our business in our Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the SEC because these risk factors may affect our operations and financial results.

In today's release and on today's call, we provide both GAAP and non-GAAP financial results. We provide this supplemental information to enable investors to perform additional comparisons of operating results and to analyze financial performance without the impact of certain non-cash expenses or other items that may obscure trends in our underlying performance.

During our call, our comments and comparisons to income statement items will be based primarily on non-GAAP results. For a complete reconciliation of GAAP to non-GAAP financial measures, please refer to our earnings release issued earlier today available on our Investor Relations website at ir.qorvo.com under Financial Releases.

Joining us today are Bob Bruggeworth, President and CEO; Grant Brown, CFO; Dave Fullwood, Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing; and other members of Qorvo's management team.

And with that, I will turn the call over to Bob.

Robert Bruggeworth
Chief Executive Officer at Qorvo

Thanks, Doug, and welcome everyone to Qorvo's fiscal 2024 first-quarter call. Revenue, margin, and EPS were all above the midpoint of the outlook we provided on our May 3rd earnings call. End-market demand in the June quarter was consistent with our expectations. Within the Android ecosystem, channel inventories continue to be consumed and Qorvo continued to under ship-to-end market demand. We expect a continued reduction in channel inventories in the September quarter and we see Android channel inventories normalizing by calendar year-end.

In other markets relative strength in the areas like defense and aerospace and automotive was offset by inventory consumption across consumer markets and weak demand in 5G infrastructure. In some of these markets, we expect inventory consumption to extend into next year. Qorvo has worked diligently since last fall to aggressively drive down channel inventories in multiple markets while at the same time prioritizing new product development and securing customer designs. This has enabled us to drive growth in large customer programs and it positions Qorvo for incremental growth as end markets recover.

As we have stated in the past Qorvo's growth targets by segment are for strong double-digit growth in connectivity and sensors, double-digit growth in high-performance analog, and mid-to-high single-digit growth in Advanced Cellular. Design wins during the quarter and HPA were diversified across customers and markets and included large defense programs extending multiple years.

In connectivity and sensors, design activity span a variety of applications including highly integrated IoT connectivity solutions, Wi-Fi 7 RF front-ends, and force-sensing touch sensors. We have a broad range of growth drivers and CSP, and we are pleased with our increasing design activity in new growth areas like sensors and ultra-wideband. Over time, we see HPA and CSG contributing increasingly to growth, diversification, and margin expansion.

In Advanced Cellular, design activity continued to be favorable across all leading smartphone OEMs. We are growing our content and next-generation 5G smartphones at our largest customers and we are capturing new content in the Android ecosystem as 4G units transition to 5G in Android or Sam. In calendar 2023, approximately 45% of Android smartphones will be 5G and we expect Android 5G smartphone unit growth to post double-digit CAGR for several years.

Now let's turn to some quarterly highlights. In automotive applications, Qorvo was selected by an automotive tier-one to supply ultra-wideband connectivity for an upcoming EV launch by a US-based manufacturer. We are pleased with this win and the growing content opportunity in automotive for the ultra-wideband content inside the car will typically include five to seven placements, plus one placement in each key fob. We also secured touch sensor design wins, enabling force level detection in a range of smart interior applications including center console, door panel, steering wheel, and display. These are multiple design wins totaling multiple millions of dollars.

In Automotive Connectivity, we were selected by a leading automotive antenna supplier to provide Cellular V2X front-end modules and BAW coexistence filters for use by a major European-based OEM. Lastly, we expanded our automotive footprint with an automotive radar design-win to supply receiver amplifier for a major US-based automotive OEM. Qorvo's automotive opportunities include DC to DC converters, onboard chargers, smart interiors, RF front-ends for 5G, Wi-Fi V2X connectivity, radars, and ultra-wideband secure car access for key parts and inside cars.

In Wi-Fi. We secured several Wi-Fi 7 design wins with access point providers for our Wi-Fi 7 BAW filters enabling full coverage of 2.4, 2.5, and 2.6 gigahertz bands. We also began sampling tier-one customers for our next-generation Wi-Fi 7 FEM, which pairs with multiple chipsets.

In our Connectivity Systems business, we were among the first to Achieved Matter 1.1 certification for our concurrent connect integrated solutions for gateways and devices. This expands our market opportunity in support of the top smart home ecosystem customers whose installed base exceeds 150 million home networks.

In silicon carbide, we booked a multi-million dollar customer order for silicon carbide power devices supporting AI servers and other data center applications. Design-win funnel for Qorvo silicon carbide power devices is increasing and we continue to expand our supply base to support our customers.

In addition to the previously-announced supply agreement with SK Siltron, we also have agreements in place with Woolsey [Phonetic] and Coherent. For broadband applications, we extended our leadership in DOCSIS 4.0 with customer sampling of our 1.8 gigahertz hybrid power doubler. This solution delivers more RF power with lower-power consumption than competing solid-state solutions.

In Cellular Infrastructure, we released a highly integrated 3.4 to 3.8 gigahertz 8-watt PAM that simplifies 5G massive MIMO system design. We also began sampling the industry's first C band Discrete BAW band pass filter for 5G small cell radios. For defense communications, we began sampling the industry's first 2 to 18 gigahertz transmit, receive front-end module delivering 10 watts of transmit power. This highly integrated wideband solution integrates LMH PAD switch. It leverages Qorvo's advanced packaging and process technologies to maximize power efficiency in a miniaturized footprint. The form factor and functional density of our solution is especially critical given the trend in our defense and aerospace business of one-to-many.

In addition to manned aircraft, there will be many more drones. In addition to large geo satellites, there will be many more LEO satellites. These future communication systems and system upgrades incorporate more electronics requiring greater integration across higher volumes. For smartphone OEMs, we began sampling Android smartphone customers Qorvo's newest highly integrated, PAD, which combines in a single placement the low, mid, and high-band manpower functionality that is currently offered in two placements. This new architecture reduces the surface area by 40% to meaningfully simplify design and decrease time-to-market for mass tier 5G phones. This follows on the heels of our announcement last quarter that we began sampling a mid-high-band path that combines the main path and diversity receive content for the mid and high bands. Both placements leverage a broad range of Qorvo process technologies, including our newest BAW and SAW filters.

Lastly, we commenced customer sampling of our next-generation antenna tuners, which deliver best-in-class linearity, the industry's smallest solution size, and compatible with all major chipsets. I want to thank the Qorvo team for continued operational excellence. We have made significant progress clearing channel inventories while developing new technologies and securing new design wins that enhance our customers' products and expand our addressable market.

In the September quarter, our outlook primarily reflects new products ramping at our largest customer. Later in the year, we expect Android revenues to reflect a healthier channel in Qorvo's shipments that are more closely aligned with end-market demand. We are very encouraged by customer design activity we've seen so far this year, we expect revenue growth and margin expansion as product mix favors our high-growth investment businesses and we are positioned for incremental growth as end markets recover.

And with that, I'll hand the call off to Grant.

Grant Brown
Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at Qorvo

Thanks, Bob, and good afternoon, everyone. Revenue for the quarter was $651 million, non-GAAP gross margin was 42.9% and non-GAAP EPS was $0.34. Relative to our expectations as provided on our May earnings call results exceeded the midpoint of guidance, despite the macro-environment and channel inventory reduction efforts.

Consistent with our guidance, factory production levels improved modestly, but remain below which created an under-utilization impact during the quarter of approximately 800 basis points. The sequential improvement in gross margin and upside to the midpoint of our guidance was due to higher production levels and product mix.

Non-GAAP operating expenses in the quarter were $233 million, approximately in line with our expectations. We continue to invest in new product development that targets multiyear growth opportunities across all three segments, as well as in the teams that directly support our customers. In total, non-GAAP operating income in the quarter was $47 million or 7% of sales, which increased modestly relative to last quarter.

Breaking out operating margin by each segment ACG was 11%, HPA was 17%, and CSG was negative 20%. During the quarter, Qorvo Biotechnologies reduced CSG operating income by approximately $2 million. As a reminder, we are currently in the process of seeking strategic alternatives for this business. Non-GAAP net income was $34 million representing diluted earnings per share of $0.34.

Moving on to the cash flow statement. Free cash flow was $5 million in capital expenditures were $39 million. During the quarter, we repurchased $100 million worth of shares at an average price of $96.81. The rate and pace of our repurchases is based on our long-term outlook, free cash flow, low leverage, alternative uses of cash, and other factors.

Turning to the balance sheet, as of quarter-end, we had approximately $2 billion of debt outstanding with no near-term maturities, and $744 million of cash and equivalents. Cash benefited from the sale of our Farmers Branch campus, which was completed during the quarter. Consistent with our expectations and commentary from our prior earnings call, our net inventory balance ended the quarter was up $121 million to $917 million driven by the seasonal ramps at our largest customer.

Turning to our current quarter outlook, we expect quarterly revenue of approximately $1 billion plus or minus $15 million. Non-GAAP gross margin between 45% and 46% and non-GAAP diluted earnings per share of approximately $1.75 at the midpoint of the revenue range. Our outlook contemplates the current demand environment, further consumption of channel inventory, and seasonal factors. Our non-GAAP guidance for fiscal Q2 excludes any costs related to the divestiture of the biotech business but includes ongoing operating expenses until it is divested. We project non-GAAP operating expenses in the September quarter will be approximately $240 million.

In addition to growth-oriented investments across our product and technology portfolios, we are also targeting enterprise-wide productivity initiatives we're simplifying and rationalizing processes and upgrading the core systems we use to run the business. We will present these productivity investments as non-GAAP other operating expenses. These multiyear efforts will support future growth and enhance profitability as we upgrade, modernize, and standardize around the latest tools and best practices. Below the operating income line, non-operating expense is expected to be approximately $10 million, reflecting the interest paid on our fixed-rate debt offset by interest income earned on our cash balances, FX gains, or losses along with other items.

Our non-GAAP tax rate for fiscal '24 is expected to be within a range of 13% to 15%. We expect our inventory balance will decrease in the September quarter as we support a seasonal ramp at our largest customer. In terms of channel inventory, the environment continues to improve. Inventories of our components in the Android channel will reduce during the June quarter by approximately 20%. This follows greater than 20% reductions in the prior two quarters. We anticipate channel inventories will continue to decline this quarter. Later this calendar year, we expect the Android channel inventories will normalize. Outside of the Android ecosystem, there are smaller pockets of channel inventories that will take longer to digest. For the full year, there is no change to the full-fiscal '24 commentary we provided last quarter.

To reiterate, we forecast fiscal '24 revenue will be above fiscal '23 and expect to benefit from strong dollar content growth at our largest customer. For the full-year fiscal '24 non-GAAP gross margin is expected to be approximately 44% with variability on a quarterly basis primarily tracking utilization and mix. During the second half of the fiscal year, we expect sequential declines in gross margin during Q3 and again in Q4, primarily related to utilization and mix. Non-GAAP operating expenses for Q3 and Q4 are expected to be approximately $230 million to $245 million per quarter with variability related to the timing of product development spend, investments in core systems and related productivity initiatives, incentive compensation based on our expectations for improved financial performance, the timing of the biotechnology business disposition as well as other items.

Qorvo enjoys multi-year growth drivers across our three segments. We are leveraging a broad portfolio of technologies and capabilities to grow content this year on large customer programs and we are uniquely positioned across leading customers and large markets. We're investing to drive outsized growth in diverse businesses to broaden our market exposure and accelerate growth.

At this time, please open the line for questions. Thank you.

Questions and Answers

Operator

Thank you. We will now be conducting a question-and-answer session. [Operator Instructions] As a reminder, please restrict yourself to one question and one follow-up. [Operator Instructions] The first question comes from the line of Karl Ackerman with BNP Paribas. Please go ahead.

Karl Ackerman
Analyst at BNP Paribas Securities Corp. North America

Yeah, thank you. Two questions if I may, gentlemen. First, could you comment on your ability to secure gallium and germanium substrates for your products and I guess, what are your thoughts on the ability to pass along higher substrate costs if that were to occur going forward?

Grant Brown
Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at Qorvo

Sure, thanks for the question, Kyle, this is Grant. We currently don't believe the export ban will have a meaningful near-term impact. It took effect yesterday, as you know, but it was communicated well in advance and I credit our ops and sales team for acting quickly to access the supply needs and communicate with customers and suppliers, and ultimately for increasing our raw material coverage with our direct suppliers wherever needed but we have not observed any notable changes in our customers' behavior or supplier lead times. We remain in close contact with our suppliers and they have assured us their ability to support our demand is down to individual purchase orders on committed delivery dates. In terms of pricing, we have again haven't seen anything abnormal there as of today.

Karl Ackerman
Analyst at BNP Paribas Securities Corp. North America

Very helpful. I guess, if I could just maybe zoom out for a second. I was hoping to use this you could discuss the timing of the automotive design wins you've mentioned in your prepared remarks across many applications, really silicon carbide, ultra-wideband, force sensing My understanding was that automotive representative kind of a mid-single-digit portion of your sales. I could be wrong, but that clearly appears to be expanding. So could you comment? And whether maybe your automotive business doubles for you by 2025. Thanks.

Robert Bruggeworth
Chief Executive Officer at Qorvo

Thanks, Karl. This is Bob, appreciate the question. As you well know, the nice thing about automotive is when you get great visibility for multiple years, unlike the smartphone industry where today we get a little bit of visibility, but you have to then target the following models where in automotive as you pointed out, you go out several years, we've got great visibility. At this time, we're not sizing it, but I think based on the volume of opportunities that we shared in my prepared remarks plus in the press release, it is our expectations as you pointed out, as we move out into calendar year '25 and '26, it will become a much more meaningful part of our business. But as you pointed out, we're already participating in some of the automotive applications today. I will comment the electric vehicle manufacturers do seem to move a little bit more, a little bit faster than the traditional gas engine manufacturers, but we do look forward to continuing to report our progress.

Operator

Thank you. Next question comes from the line of Ruben Roy with Stifel Nicolaus. Please go ahead.

Ruben Roy
Analyst at Stifel, Nicolaus & Company, Inc. (Research)

Thank you. Bob, if I can follow up right where you left off on auto, can you talk about or characterize the types of automobiles, where you're winning? Is it sort of flagship versions or flagship autos or mid-tier, high-end, or across the board? And at this point, is there a way to think about content per auto in dollars?

Robert Bruggeworth
Chief Executive Officer at Qorvo

Sure, thanks so much. I have Dave get into some of the details on that Ruben.

Dave Fullwood
Senior Vice President of Sales & Marketing at Qorvo

Yeah, seeing this you imagine somebody's product that we're talking about, they're going to start at the higher-tier of the auto from ultra-wideband or the sensors that are going into the cockpit. Electric vehicles are certainly our focus there, but even some of the higher-end gas-powered vehicles, and over time we expect that to go down-market. On some of the connectivity side, that can go more broadly across the portfolio in the OEMs because there you're talking about connectivity within the vehicle connectivity from vehicle to outside of the vehicle. So some of those are more driven by the governments and those requirements are going to be across all vehicles regardless of the tier where that model is.

Ruben Roy
Analyst at Stifel, Nicolaus & Company, Inc. (Research)

Got it. Thank you. And as a follow-up, Grant, I caught the operating margin numbers you gave for the segments. Don't know if I missed this, but I don't have it, can you give us the dollars or kind of the performance for the segments in the June quarter, and then, obviously you've got strong content gains that the largest customer driving the September revenue expectation, but if you can give us any granularity on how you're thinking about the other segments as you proceed any changes to how you're thinking about those segments through the rest of the year? Thanks.

Grant Brown
Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at Qorvo

Sure, Ruben. Revenue by segment was $412 million for ACG, $140 million for HPA, and $99 million for CSG. In ACG, our fiscal Q1 is the lowest seasonal point. For those largest customers but despite that, the topline for ACG was approximately flat or down about a percent or so. Both HPA and CST saw sequential growth in the quarter of 5% and 21% sequentially.

As I commented in the prepared remarks operating income was 11%, just for ACG, 17% for HPA, and then 20% for CSG, which was a notable sequential improvement for CSG. We don't guide by segment, but looking out into September the primary driver is the content gains at our largest customer within ACG. Revenue is not supported by existing inventory. It's built and shipped in line with the seasonal ramp, so it's not burdened with those higher costs of some of the Android inventory, for example. So that benefits, gross margin, and has been factored into our -- into our guidance.

Ruben Roy
Analyst at Stifel, Nicolaus & Company, Inc. (Research)

Appreciate it.

Robert Bruggeworth
Chief Executive Officer at Qorvo

Operator?

Douglas DeLieto
Vice President, Investor Relations at Qorvo

Operator, next question, please.

Robert Bruggeworth
Chief Executive Officer at Qorvo

Operator, are you there?

Operator

This is the operator. Should I take a question over?

Robert Bruggeworth
Chief Executive Officer at Qorvo

Yes, please. Next question, please.

Operator

Just a moment. The next question comes from the line of Gary Mobley with Wells Fargo. Please go ahead.

Gary Mobley
Analyst at Wells Fargo Securities

Hey, guys. Wasn't sure if was getting my question. Good afternoon. I was observing that your first half of fiscal year '24 appears to be running about 3% above your May Commentary and/or about $50 million. What's driving that minor variance? And is there anything to call out that may be offsetting that?

Grant Brown
Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at Qorvo

Sure, thanks, Gary. Did I get the question? I think it's fair to say that the quarter played out better than we had forecast when we provided our May guidance. If you -- if you look into that revenue, it was strengthened in the areas that we had -- that we had talked about at our largest customer, and then within having cleared some of the channel inventory, we're still benefiting to a modest degree there, but generally speaking, the quarter played out better.

In terms of the drivers on maybe the EPS beat to go a little further than just revenue that was primarily gross margin improvement, which was partially driven by the revenue upside, but was also a factor thereof lower factory variances, including utilization, better utilization, and continuing cost-reduction efforts. Those were partially offset by some inventory-related charges in typical price erosion, along with inflation but generally speaking, the quarter was -- was better than -- than we had forecasted in May.

Gary Mobley
Analyst at Wells Fargo Securities

Got it. Thanks, Grant. And so you're guiding the September quarter revenue at about $1 billion, which takes us back to a similar level to the June quarter of fiscal year '23 when gross margins were 450 basis points higher and I presume the difference today is that you would you just have too much inventory and you just can't fully utilize the manufacturing operations under -- my question is under what circumstances can we see a return to that 50% gross margin.

Grant Brown
Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at Qorvo

Sure, we still have visibility to 50%. As I pointed out on the call, we have about 800 basis point headwind from utilization in the prior quarter, and looking forward, we still have those same issues from a utilization perspective, as you pointed out, on inventory. I think as we clear the channel inventory across Android and utilization returns to a level in which we're shipping to end-market demand, we should have a clear path back toward the 50% gross margins we've enjoyed in the past. Those are really twofold. There is the inventory we have on hand, which is already burdened with the cost of that under-utilization in the past and then there is the forward-looking utilization within the current quarter as we meet future demand or build product for future demand. Both of those can weigh on the quarter and are in that 800 basis points that I quoted. The underutilization current period can if it's extreme can hit as period charges and we've experienced some of those as well. So it's really as we re-synchronize our factories to end market demand, we should have a clear path to that.

Operator

Thank you. Next question comes from the line of Srini Pajjuri with Raymond James. Please go ahead.

Srini Pajjuri
Analyst at Raymond James

Thank you. Bob, on the Android inventory, you seem pretty optimistic that it's going to normalize by end of the calendar year. So, I guess as we look out to the March quarter and next calendar year, what's the, I guess in the strategy for, I guess whether you call it refilling the channel or maybe just trying to think about how the seasonality might get impacted once the inventory normalizes.

Robert Bruggeworth
Chief Executive Officer at Qorvo

Thanks, Srini, for your question. Yeah, we are getting pretty comfortable with the progress we're making and as both Graham and I have commented, the team has done a great job of managing the inventory down, working with our customers, working with some of our distributors to do that and our expectations are that we should be able to by the end of the calendar year, things will normalize. And then, obviously, as that happens, we're not expecting our end demand to change at all from where we are. In fact, as we sit here today reporting the most recent quarter than we were a quarter ago, our numbers for units of Android phones -- smartphones have not changed. So we think things are stabilizing some, yes, the market has been down here a little bit up there, but overall.

So as we look out into '24, calendar '24, fiscal '25 for us, we're not ready to make any calls on what's going to happen with the macro-economy and things like that but clearly, as we've come down to normalized inventories that headwind turns into a tailwind. So, we'll watch how that plays out.

Srini Pajjuri
Analyst at Raymond James

Yeah, that's great. And then maybe one for Grant. Grant, you kind of highlighted underutilization as one of the issues with the gross margin, but I guess, the other issue is the high-cost inventory. So, I guess at what point that stops to become a headwind to your gross margins and maybe potentially a tailwind?

Grant Brown
Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at Qorvo

Sure, we haven't commented beyond fiscal '24, so, I won't do that here, but in our guidance with a sequential drop in Q3, you start to see some improvement there and then in Q4, again, you'll start to see even more improvement as we sell through some of the channel inventory. Now gross margin will be sequentially down in the sense that we're selling through some of that inventory, but we do expect to resynchronize utilization towards the end of our fiscal year and into fiscal '25, but we haven't commented specifically beyond that.

Operator

Thank you. Next question comes from the line of Vivek Arya with Bank of America Securities. Please go ahead.

Vivek Arya
Analyst at Bank of America Merrill Lynch

Thank you for taking my question. Bob, you are sounding more confident about the topline growth but since the last time, Qorvo reported that has been kind of this pronounced slowdown in China, and even if the Android customer inventory might be getting cleaned up, your large customers still have China as an important end-markets. So I'm curious that on the last call, you suggested that December sales could be flattish on that and March would be down just kind of seasonal, is that still the right way to think about December and March or do you think we should be reflecting any macro effects that we're seeing by way of sell-through and just consumer demand.

Grant Brown
Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at Qorvo

Thanks, Vivek. It's Grant. Let me take that one. Beyond the specific September quarter guidance that we just provided there is no change to the fiscal '24 commentary that we provided last quarter. So as Bob pointed out, our expectations for a sell-through and in the channel remain the same, absent any macro-related disruptions, which we're not predicting, we do forecast and continue to think fiscal '24 revenue will be above fiscal '23 as you mentioned, and we're benefiting from some strong dollar content growth at our largest customer and then later in the year, we will benefit from the actions we've taken in connection with our customers to clear that channel inventory.

To be clear, we are calling for very modest growth on the year, which is consistent but in fact, our forecast does not anticipate a significant rebound in Android units, the Qorvo-specific situation as we processed through the channel inventory and then return to shipping to end-market demand. Beyond revenue just for the year, there's also no change to our fiscal '24 non-GAAP gross margin still expected to be approximately 24% plus or minus with some variability on a quarterly basis tracking utilization and mix, which I've already talked about. This is important to understand. The mix will shift seasonally over fiscal Q3 and even more so in fiscal Q4 towards higher-cost inventories and utilization is also important, as I pointed out because it supports that incremental forward-looking demand but also because severe underutilization can lead to period costs as I mentioned earlier. We've been very transparent there and continue to expect those sequential declines in gross margin and that's factored into our 44% guide.

I covered opex a bit in my prepared remarks but it's important to note that we are investing for the future. We're investing in large customer programs where we have the technologies to win. We're investing in diversifying businesses like silicon carbide, UWB, Matter, SiC, and power management. And finally, we're investing in ourselves by upgrading our core systems and numerous productivity initiatives. So on the whole, there's no change to our fiscal '24 guidance and our view of the market remains the same.

Vivek Arya
Analyst at Bank of America Merrill Lynch

Thanks, Grant. It's very helpful. And then on gross margins. Apologize, if you had answered this before, but again from the last call, I think you had mentioned December could be down 100 basis points, 150 basis points, and then March would be down another 200 basis points to 300 basis points as you work through some of the higher-priced component inventory. What would make that component inventory cost go down, right, I imagine there has been more inflation, over time, so I guess this is just a long-winded way of asking that, as we start the next fiscal year, what is the right baseline of gross margins we should think about, is it that 43%, 44% level as you're exiting March as at the average level that you have in this fiscal year or what is the right way to just think about the baseline level of gross margin as you enter the next fiscal year.

Robert Bruggeworth
Chief Executive Officer at Qorvo

Sure. I might think about it in two different ways. I wouldn't characterize Q1 of fiscal '25 as baseline revenue, but I think it's appropriate to build-off of what you are modeling in Q4 of fiscal '24, but we haven't provided explicitly -- explicit guidance for that.

Operator

Thank you. Next question comes from the line of Tim Arcuri with UBS. Please go ahead.

Unidentified Participant
at Qorvo

Yeah, this is Amania calling in for Tim. I have just one question from me, just wanted to ask about the used phone market for iPhone has potentially changed the trajectory of the recovery on the Android side because I know that the Android market, the used phone market is going substantially. So, I just wanted, trying to get a sense for if that sort of a, like a headwind to the recovery on the Android side.

Robert Bruggeworth
Chief Executive Officer at Qorvo

Yeah, the iPhone refurbished market has been around for quite a long-time. So, at least when we model that coupled with everything else that we do in our normal research for phone usage, different segments, all those things that we feed into our model, we've taken all that into account for all the comments that we've made this evening, last quarter, the quarter before that and the quarter before that. So it's all-in our calculus already.

Vivek Arya
Analyst at Bank of America Merrill Lynch

Thank you.

Robert Bruggeworth
Chief Executive Officer at Qorvo

Thank you. Next question comes from the line of Matt Ramsay with TD Cowen and Company. Please go ahead.

Matthew Ramsay
Analyst at TD Cowen

Thank you, guys, good afternoon. There's a couple of calls going on at the same time, so I apologize if I missed a little bit. Got it, I heard all the comments going into the back half of the year regarding inventory in the handset market and also your sales potentially getting better with the large customer. I wanted to ask the Qualcomm guys mentioned not having a license to ship into Huawei for 5G and there's some pretty well-documented reports about HiSilicon doing a modem with SMIC for some of those phones and it's uncertain about volumes, but could you guys tell us if you would be allowed to participate in those handset builds and if you have sort of export license to do so? Thanks.

Robert Bruggeworth
Chief Executive Officer at Qorvo

Matt, thanks for the question. I don't believe there's any company in the US that has a license to ship to Huawei for a 5G phone. They become a very small customer of ours. So there's no real impact from that perspective. And as you pointed out, we'll see if they are successful or not, it won't impact our business at this time.

Matthew Ramsay
Analyst at TD Cowen

Got it. No, that was my assumption, but I had a few people ask me to clarify that. I guess as my follow-up. You guys have spent a lot of time talking about diversification of the company outside of the wireless market and it's not lost on us through the press release and some of your communications that the first bunch of bullets was about things in the auto market and in aerospace and defense and a bunch of markets, silicon carbide, a bunch of things outside of the handset market but there's also been some pretty dynamic macroeconomic conditions in all of those markets as well like nothing is really immune from the macro. So maybe you guys could give us a little bit of an update outside of the handset market, how inventory for the company is overall, are customers in the channel, are there any, it's well-documented what the inventory headwinds are, the gross margin and a recovery in your handset business and we all follow that closely but are there anything that we should know about outside of the handset market from an inventory perspective or do you feel like things are relatively clean there? Thank you.

Grant Brown
Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at Qorvo

Sure, this is Grant, let me take maybe the two-part question, and then I'll ask Dave to step in if I miss anything. The question about the growth drivers. If you look at or think about the phases of growth that we're looking at right now, you could as we've commented return to shipping it to end market demand is relatively near-term. Beyond that, we continue to work with our customers and believe that we'll benefit as the volume levels return. So beyond just shipping to end market demand, we should see some growth and return to normalcy over the coming years.

And then maybe beyond that, even into the longer-term, we should see the benefits from the investments we're making, that would be sort of beyond 5G and then you're looking into the migration to DOCSIS Board Auto within HPA the one too many phenomenon that Bob commented on in defense and aerospace will continue, within CSG, there's a move to WiFi 7 and among many other things that we're investing in and expect to see growth there.

In the near term on inventory to that piece of the question, we are seeing pockets, which we've talked about before in base station and partially in Wi-Fi and some consumer areas, which will take longer for us to work through versus Android. And Dave, I don't know if you have anything further.

Dave Fullwood
Senior Vice President of Sales & Marketing at Qorvo

Yeah, you have got it right, Grant and the inventories in the channel for -- for most of the components outside of Android will probably be on a similar cadence maybe into early next year other than the base station. We don't have as good a visibility into our customers' end markets, how much inventory may be there that they need to work for us. So that's probably a little bit of uncertainty for us.

Operator

Thank you. Next question comes from the line of Christopher Rolland with Susquehanna. Please go ahead.

Christopher Rolland
Analyst at Susquehanna Financial Group

Hey guys, congrats on the great guidance. And sorry, if these were answered, but in December, did you still expect that to be flat revenues, flattish from September, any other thoughts on seasonality moving forward? And then, Grant, I know you expect revenue to grow fiscal year-on-year. Any chance that EPS could grow as well, or is that a little too far of a long shot?

Grant Brown
Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at Qorvo

Sure, thanks, Chris. And I'm glad you asked the question actually on December. So when we made the comments to a flattish December it was on our --previously anchored to our last quarter guidance. So, I would expect that it right now, given that we're not anticipating significant growth in fiscal '24 that I would start with the comments we made last quarter, it could end up being slightly down to flattish. And then, of course, some seasonal decline in March, potentially less than normal as we clear the channel. So that question has been asked. I'm glad you went there. In terms of EPS, I've given the majority of the P&L but haven't commented specifically on annual EPS relative to fiscal '23.

Christopher Rolland
Analyst at Susquehanna Financial Group

And then I thought it was interesting you mentioned silicon carbide. I believe it was for AI servers, if I got that right, and is that like DC to DC or power supplies or any other detail there would be great, if I got that right.

Robert Bruggeworth
Chief Executive Officer at Qorvo

Yeah, you got that right. It's for power supply into servers, and, of course, AI and any kind of application like that is going to drive demand there. So that's good for us, but that's a strong market for us as we grow our silicon carbide business.

Operator

Thank you. Next question comes from the line of Edward Snyder with Charter Equity Research. Please go ahead.

Edward Snyder
Analyst at Charter Equity Research

Thanks, Bob. Thanks a lot. Based on everything you said here and a bit stronger than expected guidance in September. Everything you said about Android, you're not expecting rebound, etc. Does that suggests that the extra strength is coming from your content gains, your largest customer, and doesn't that imply, given your share and all that, that you're going to see well year-over-year and content is going to have to be up much more significantly 40% overall, if I got the math right.

Robert Bruggeworth
Chief Executive Officer at Qorvo

Thanks. Thank you. Consistent with what we've been saying we're going to have significant content gain in our largest customer. As I've said in other public forums that primarily in products that we already participated in, where we've been able to grow our share as well as they adding content.

Edward Snyder
Analyst at Charter Equity Research

Right. So that was my second question because you have been clear that the content gains are kind of a mix of both share gains and new content. Does that mean that we will see you in sections that we haven't seen in the past, we talked about new content or is it just additions to, you've been very strong in previously and how sticky do you feel the share gains will be over the next year or so, especially the ones that you're taking from other folks, just curious.

Robert Bruggeworth
Chief Executive Officer at Qorvo

Yeah, thanks, Ed. Again what I've said publicly is, which I know it's hard for many of you to find in the antenna tuner space along with some of the other small components that are in there that are quite honestly, a lot of you missed, they not on the motherboard, they are in various other flex circuits and things like that gaining there and any ultra-high band we've talked PA and BAW filter and we've been in for about three years. So that's the area. So it's really in those two areas, primarily.

Edward Snyder
Analyst at Charter Equity Research

Areas that you guys have actually been quite strong and you are expanding given all the new connectivity going on here. Make sense and we evaluated every tenant tuners, I think you looked like 12 to 15 in the last mile, plus a couple of impedance tuners too. So that's generally what we're talking about in most of the gains.

Robert Bruggeworth
Chief Executive Officer at Qorvo

Your numbers, not mine, I'm not going to comment on the units, number of units per phone. I will say you're in the right area. I'd also point out we publicly said in the last couple of quarterly calls as well that we still believe there's lots of opportunity for us to grow with that customer as we look forward in the coming years.

Edward Snyder
Analyst at Charter Equity Research

Great. Thank you, Bob.

Robert Bruggeworth
Chief Executive Officer at Qorvo

Thank you.

Operator

Thank you. There are no further questions at this time. I would like to turn the floor back over to the management for closing comments.

Robert Bruggeworth
Chief Executive Officer at Qorvo

Well, thank you everyone for joining us on today's call. We appreciate your time and look forward to speaking with you at upcoming investor events. Thank you and hope you have a good night.

Operator

[Operator Closing Remarks]

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