If you haven't noticed, there's been a bit of volatility in the markets as of late, and the tech sector hasn't come out unscathed.
The following stocks are all down more than 15% over the past 12 months, but their sinking phases may not last much longer. All are well positioned to bounce back this year, if investors give them a chance.
NXP Semiconductors NV
NXP Semiconductors (NXPI -2.32%)is down about 19% over the past 12 months, and its most recent drop stems from news that demand for Apple's (AAPL -3.00%) iPhone is slowing. NXP makes the near field communication (NFC) chips for the iPhone and the Apple Watch, and investors are worried that weaker iPhone demand will push down revenue for NXP.
While that may be partially true, it's not likely to be a long-term issue for NXP. First of all, Apple isn't NXP's only customer. In fact, NXP hasn't received more than 10% of its revenue from any single company for the past three years. This diverse customer base will allow the company to maintain stability even if iPhone demand tapers off for a bit.
But the big potential for the company in 2016 comes from its recent acquisition of Freescale Semiconductor. NXP was already a major player in automotive technologies, but the Freescale deal took the company's position to a new level.
NXP is now the largest supplier of automotive semiconductors, with 13% market share. The company is poised to benefit as more technology is being added to cars, and as semi-autonomous and autonomous cars hit the market in the future.
Additionally, the synergies from the Freescale acquisition are expected to cut costs in the sum of $200 million for NXP, as well as bring the company $10 billion in combined revenue this year.
With all that NXP has to look forward to -- and with the iPhone demand issues already factored into the share price -- I think 2016 could be a good year for the company's investors.
Skyworks Solutions (SWKS -4.47%) is another semiconductor company that could see a significant turnaround this year. As with NXP, Skyworks' stock price to another hit recently on news of Apple's iPhone slowdown -- it's down 24% over the past 12 months.
Skyworks makes the radio frequency (RF) chips in Apple's smartphones, and earns nearly 35% to 40% of its revenue from the company. But there are two things to consider when thinking about the company's exposure to Apple. First, Skywork's stock price already has declining iPhone demand baked into it. Any news in the coming months about iPhone sales shouldn't cause another Skyworks stock price drop.
Secondly, Skyworks will likely benefit from Apple's upcoming iPhone 7. Skyworks will likely win the contract to provide its RF amplifier, giving the company a spot in Apple's next major iPhone overhaul.
The most successful iPhone sales years are those when Apple upgrades the device to new number, with all the major changes that come with it. Apple typically debuts its new flagship iPhones in September, which leaves plenty of time for investors to get on board before the device is revealed.
In addition to the likelihood of its chips finding a place in Apple's next flagship smartphone, John Vinh from Pacific Crest Securities believes Skyworks could also increase its bill of sales for the next iPhone as well. He wrote in an investor note last month that Skyworks' carrier aggregation technology (which increases phones' cellular bandwidth and data speeds) could add an additional 15% in RF content growth for the company.
Skyworks is branching out into other areas as well, in order to reduce its reliance on Apple. The company is expanding into chips for the automotive market, security cameras, drones and smart homes; it already makes technology used in Nest thermostats. With this more intense push to get its tech inside IoT devices, Skyworks could end up having a great year -- if it's able to boost its RF sales in the iPhone 7, as well as build up these new revenue segments.
Ambarella (AMBA -2.41%) has suffered collateral damage from GoPro's recent crash. The action camera maker struck out with its last two cameras, and is still struggling to find a way to make money from user-generated content. Ambarella supplies the chips that power all of GoPro's devices, so of course, it's sharing the pain from GoPro's woes. The semiconductor maker's stock is down about 16% over the past year.
But Ambarella has a chance to turn things around this year. The company is looking to expand its prospects beyond the action camera market (while still holding onto hope for a GoPro turnaround). It's focusing on capturing more of the drone market this year, and at the Consumer Electronics Show in January the company unveiled two new chips exclusively for high-end drones.
Ambarella already makes chips for DJI, the world's largest drone maker -- as well as many others -- and could benefit from the growing market. Commercial drone sales are expected to hit $5.5 billion by 2020, a compound annual growth rate of 32% between 2015 and 2020.
The company's chips also just earned a key spot in the body cameras Taser is selling to the London Police, and it's expanding its sales in the automotive market as well. Is Ambarella completely diversified from GoPro? No, it's not. But the company is making clear steps to find new markets and customers for its processors, and it's winning contracts. The company's push into these new segments, along with some better numbers from GoPro, could push the stock back into positive territory this year.