Thursday, June 6, 2024

"Nvidia’s Rise to $3 Trillion Fuels ‘Jensanity’ in Tech World" (NVDA)

Following on Yesterday's "Nvidia At $1200, "God, Give Me A Sign" (NVDA)" (now corrected for those who experienced the invisible ink effect on the link).

From Bloomberg via Yahoo Finance: 

Jensen Huang wasn’t on the official Computex 2024 program, but he didn’t need to be.

The Nvidia Corp. billionaire led an unprecedented cast of tech glitterati to the world’s biggest computing conference this week in Taiwan, where he effortlessly upstaged the likes of Intel Corp.’s Pat Gelsinger — without a single official keynote or session. From packing a 4,000-seat sports stadium to paparazzi-fueled night-market jaunts, the leather jacket-clad CEO and his $3 trillion company drew the largest audiences and biggest entourages.

As icing on the cake, the 61-year-old this week joined the likes of Elon Musk in a select group of business chieftains worth at least $100 billion, riding a $315 billion Nvidia market rally over three frantic days.

“Someone coined the term Jensanity, and that’s exactly what it’s been,” said Dan Nystedt, an analyst at TriOrient Investments.

Yet observers who navigate past Nvidia’s (very large) wake can spot trends that may in time determine the direction in which AI evolves around the world. This year, “AI PCs” mushroomed across the cavernous showfloors; hitherto-unknown Taiwanese names became stars; Microsoft Corp. software was ubiquitous in presentations and exhibition booths; and many tech honchos studiously avoided talking China, sanctions or politics.

Here’s what we learned at the largest Computex ever.

It’s Jensen’s World...
Nvidia’s star grew even more ascendant this week, thanks to its dominant share of the market for the high-end accelerators used to train AI.

Huang was easy to spot on the show floor at all times — observers could literally tell where he was from the cheering, chanting and visible, moving mass of people that track the CEO wherever he goes. When not touring the booths, he hosted dinners for CEOs and cameo-ed at partner events. He signed Super Micro servers, journalists’ laptops and - in a video that went viral - one young lady’s chest.

Many credit Huang’s company for putting Taiwan and Computex on the map. Just a year ago, the co-founder urged one audience of Taiwanese students to “run, don’t walk” to embrace AI. This year, Huang was racing so hard he didn’t get breakfast one day until 3:30 pm when he munched on a turkey sandwich — onstage while speaking to the crowd.

Nvidia today commands an ecosystem of software, hardware and solutions that rivals from Advanced Micro Devices Inc. to Intel are trying hard to break up or replicate. “It’s almost becoming Nvidia against the world,” said Ian Cutress of the consultancy More Than Moore.

But one little-understood fact about Nvidia is that its success hinges in no small part on the hundreds of companies that together make AI possible — many of them based in Taiwan.

But He Too Pays his Respects
Taiwan sent a message with this year’s raucous Computex: If you want AI, you need Taiwan.

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. made the island a compulsory stop for governments around the world trying to secure chips. But there’s more to AI than just the chip: motherboards, modules, servers, cooling systems and more are all mostly designed and initially made in Taiwan. More than nine-tenths of the world’s AI-capable servers are made by the island’s firms, Bloomberg Intelligence’s Steven Tseng estimates, operating out of factories spanning Mexico to Malaysia....