What happened

Synopsys (NASDAQ:SNPS) stock outpaced a booming market last year, gaining 65% compared to a 29% spike in the S&P 500, according to data provided by S&P Global Market Intelligence.

Shareholders enjoyed a comfortable lead over the broader market for the entire year, with the semiconductor software specialist's returns peaking in early September at 75%.

A man sits at a table with a laptop in front of him while smiling and holding his hands behind his head

Image source: Getty Images.

So what

The rally last year was supported by what co-CEO Aart de Geus called an "outstanding" 2019 fiscal year that saw sales rise to $3.4 billion from $3.1 billion. The company showed a slight growth slowdown at the end of the year, but still beat expectations and surpassed its upgraded outlook from late August.

Now what

Synopsys' fiscal 2020 forecast calls for the company to take another significant step toward $4 billion in annual sales, with revenue set to reach roughly $3.6 billion. Investors will be watching to see whether demand pressures in a few markets threaten the tech stock's optimistic outlook, or whether the company can again outperform the industry through an aggressive innovation push across its portfolio of design automation and semiconductor intellectual property.