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NVIDIA 10-K 2010
fy2010form10k.htm

UNITED STATES
SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Washington, D.C. 20549
________________

FORM 10-K

[x]
ANNUAL REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
 
For the fiscal year ended January 31, 2010
OR
[_]
TRANSITION REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934

Commission file number: 0-23985

 
NVIDIA CORPORATION
(Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)
 
Delaware
94-3177549
(State or other jurisdiction of
(I.R.S. Employer
 Incorporation or Organization)
Identification No.)
2701 San Tomas Expressway
Santa Clara, California 95050
(408) 486-2000
(Address, including zip code, and telephone number, including area code, of principal executive offices)
 
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act:
Title of each class
Name of each exchange on which registered
Common Stock, $0.001 par value per share
The NASDAQ Global Select Market

Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act:
None

Indicate by check mark if the registrant is a well-known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act.
Yes x No o

Indicate by check mark if the registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or Section 15(d) of the Act.
Yes o No x

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days.
Yes x No o

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically and posted on its corporate Web site, if any, every Interactive Data File required to be submitted and posted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T (§232.405 of this chapter) during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit and post such files).
 
Yes x No o
 
Indicate by check mark if disclosure of delinquent filers pursuant to Item 405 of Regulation S-K (§ 229.405 of this chapter) is not contained herein, and will not be contained, to the best of registrant’s knowledge, in definitive proxy or information statements incorporated by reference in Part III of this Form 10-K or any amendment to this Form 10-K. o
 
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, or a smaller reporting company. See definitions of “large accelerated filer,” “accelerated filer” and “smaller reporting company” in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act. (Check one):
  
Large accelerated filer   x              
Accelerated filer o                        
Non-accelerated filer o (Do not check if a smaller reporting company)
       Smaller reporting company o

 Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Act).
Yes o No x
 
The aggregate market value of the voting stock held by non-affiliates of the registrant as of July 26, 2009 was approximately $6.7 billion (based on the closing sales price of the registrant’s common stock as reported by the NASDAQ Global Select Market, on July 24, 2009). This calculation excludes approximately 26,801,768 shares held by directors and executive officers of the registrant. This calculation does not exclude shares held by such organizations whose ownership exceeds 5% of the registrant’s outstanding common stock that have represented to the registrant that they are registered investment advisers or investment companies registered under section 8 of the Investment Company Act of 1940.
 
The number of shares of common stock outstanding as of March 10, 2010 was 566.5 million.
 
DOCUMENTS INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE
 
Portions of the registrant’s Proxy Statement for its 2010 Annual Meeting of Stockholders to be filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission by April 6, 2010 are incorporated by reference.

 
 
 
 
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NVIDIA CORPORATION

TABLE OF CONTENTS

   
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ITEM 1. BUSINESS
 
Forward-Looking Statements

This Annual Report on Form 10-K contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, which are subject to the “safe harbor” created by those sections. Forward-looking statements are based on our management’s beliefs and assumptions and on information currently available to our management. In some cases, you can identify forward-looking statements by terms such as “may,” “will,” “should,” “could,” “goal,” “would,” “expect,” “plan,” “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “project,” “predict,” “potential” and similar expressions intended to identify forward-looking statements. These statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors, which may cause our actual results, performance, time frames or achievements to be materially different from any future results, performance, time frames or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. We discuss many of these risks, uncertainties and other factors in this Annual Report on Form 10-K in greater detail under the heading “Risk Factors.” Given these risks, uncertainties and other factors, you should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. Also, these forward-looking statements represent our estimates and assumptions only as of the date of this filing. You should read this Annual Report on Form 10-K completely and with the understanding that our actual future results may be materially different from what we expect. We hereby qualify our forward-looking statements by these cautionary statements. Except as required by law, we assume no obligation to update these forward-looking statements publicly, or to update the reasons actual results could differ materially from those anticipated in these forward-looking statements, even if new information becomes available in the future.
 
    All references to “NVIDIA,” “we,” “us,” “our” or the “Company” mean NVIDIA Corporation and its subsidiaries, except where it is made clear that the term means only the parent company.
 
NVIDIA, GeForce, SLI, Hybrid SLI, GoForce, Quadro, NVIDIA Quadro, NVIDIA nForce, Tesla, Tegra, CUDA, NVIDIA APX, PhysX, Ageia, Mental Images, and the NVIDIA logo are our trademarks and/or registered trademarks in the United States and other countries that are used in this document. We may also refer to trademarks of other corporations and organizations in this document.

Our Company
 
NVIDIA Corporation helped awaken the world to the power of computer graphics when it invented the graphics processor unit, or GPU, in 1999.  Expertise in programmable GPUs has led to breakthroughs in parallel processing which make supercomputing inexpensive and widely accessible.  We serve the entertainment and consumer market with our GeForce graphics products, the professional design and visualization market with our Quadro graphics products, the high-performance computing market with our Tesla computing solutions products, and the mobile computing market with our Tegra system-on-a-chip products. During the last several fiscal years, we have operated and reported four major product-line operating segments: the GPU business, the professional solutions business, or PSB, the media and communications processor, or MCP, business, and the consumer products business, or CPB. However, effective with the first quarter of fiscal year 2011, we will no longer separate our MCP and GPU operating segments as such segmentation will no longer be reflective of the way we manage those businesses.
 
Our GPU business is comprised primarily of our GeForce products that support desktop and notebook personal computers, or PCs, plus memory products. Our PSB is comprised of our Quadro professional workstation products and other professional graphics products, including our NVIDIA Tesla high-performance computing products. Our MCP business, as we have reported it through fiscal year 2010, has been comprised primarily of our ION motherboard GPUs, or mGPU products. Our CPB is comprised of our Tegra mobile products that support tablets and smartbooks, smartphones, personal media players, or PMPs, internet television, automotive navigation, and other similar devices. CPB also includes license, royalty, other revenue and associated costs related to video game consoles and other digital consumer electronics devices.  Original equipment manufacturers, or OEMs, original design manufacturers, or ODMs, add-in-card manufacturers, system builders and consumer electronics companies worldwide utilize our processors as a core component of their entertainment, business and professional solutions.
 
We were incorporated in California in April 1993 and reincorporated in Delaware in April 1998. Our headquarter facilities are in Santa Clara, California. Our Internet address is www.nvidia.com. The contents of our website are not a part of this Form 10-K.

  GPU Business
 
  Our GPU business is comprised primarily of our GeForce products that support desktop and notebook PCs, plus memory products. Our GPU business is focused on Microsoft Windows and Apple PC platforms.  GeForce GPUs power PCs made by or distributed by most PC OEMs in the world for desktop PCs, notebook PCs, and PCs loaded with Windows Media Center and other media extenders such as the Apple TV.  GPUs enhance the user experience for playing video games, editing photos, viewing and editing videos and high-definition, or HD, movies.
 
  We believe we are in an era where visual computing is becoming increasingly important to consumers and other end users of our products. Our strategy is to promote our GeForce brand as one of the most important processors through technology leadership, increasing programmability, and great content experience.  In fiscal year 2010, our strategy was to extend our architectural and technology advantage with our GeForce GPUs.
 
   During fiscal year 2010, we introduced our next generation CUDA GPU architecture, codenamed “Fermi”.  We expect the Fermi architecture to be the foundation for computational GPUs, and to enable breakthroughs in both graphics and parallel computing. We also launched a development environment for massively parallel computing. Using this tool, which is named NVIDIA Parallel Nsight, and is integrated into Microsoft Visual Studio we expect that developers will be able to use Microsoft Visual Studio and C++ to write applications that leverage Fermi's GPU architecture. It is also designed to accelerate performance on a wider array of applications including ray tracing, physics simulation, finite element analysis, high-precision scientific computing, sparse linear algebra, sorting, and search algorithms.
 
During fiscal year 2010, we also delivered our first 40nm GPUs to customers. Because of limited 40nm wafer foundry capacity, in addition to supplier challenges related to 40nm process manufacturing yields, we were forced to allocate our available 40nm product supply among our customers.
 
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In addition, we launched Optimus™ technology, a combination of software and hardware innovations for notebooks, which turns on and off the GPU based on application needs without any user intervention thus providing the advanced performance of discrete graphics while at the same time still delivering prolonged battery life.  Our OEM customers have currently announced the availability of eight notebook models with 50 systems to be scheduled for availability by summer 2010.  We believe Optimus has the potential to expand the overall market share for discrete GPUs by increasing the GPU attach rate in the notebook segment.
 
 Professional Solutions Business
 
    Our PSB is comprised of our Quadro professional workstation products and other professional graphics products, including our Tesla high-performance computing products. Our Quadro brand products are designed to deliver the highest possible level of graphics performance and application compatibility for the professional industry.  Quadro products are recognized by many as the standard for professional graphics solutions needed to solve many of the world’s most complex visual computing challenges in the manufacturing, entertainment, medical, science, and aerospace industries. Quadro products are fully certified by several software developers for professional workstation applications and are designed to deliver the graphics performance and precision required by professional applications.

   We believe that recent years have experienced an increasing level of global adoption of the computer-aided design approach of product creation.  We have achieved a leading position in the professional graphics category by providing innovative GPU technology, software, and tools that integrate the capabilities of our GPU with a broad array of visualization products.  
 
During fiscal year 2010, we launched RealityServer, a combination of GPU hardware and software with the ability to stream interactive, photorealistic 3D applications to any web- connected PC, laptop, netbook or smart phone. We also launched during the year two significant enhancements to our Quadro product line-up:  Quadro Plex SVS, a scalable visual computing platform for professionals who interact with 3D models and analyze large volumes of data, and the OptiX ray tracing engine, part of a suite of application acceleration engines for software developers.  This suite also includes engines for managing 3D data and scenes, scaling performance across multiple GPUs and real-time modeling of hyper-realistic physical and environmental effects.
 
In the area of high performance computing, we also announced during fiscal year 2010 that AMBER, one of the popular molecular dynamics codes used by researchers in academia and pharmaceutical companies to research new drugs, had been accelerated by our CUDA architecture for massively parallel processing.  AMBER, accelerated by CUDA,  now runs up to 50 times faster on a GPU than on a central processing unit, or CPU.
 
Hewlett – Packard Company and Super Micro Computer, Inc. began carrying our Tesla computing solution products during fiscal year 2010, joining a global list of OEMs, including Cray Inc., Dell Inc., Hewlett-Packard Lenovo, Silicon Graphics International and Sun Microsystems.   We recently collaborated with a leading Chinese geophysical services provider to unveil the launch of a new Tesla-based hardware and seismic software suite that accelerates the performance of complex seismic data computation for oil and gas companies in China. We also collaborated with the investment banking division of a leading European financial institution to replace their CPU cores with a smaller cluster consisting of CPU servers and two Tesla GPU-based S1070 systems, which require significantly less power.  Factoring the acceleration in processing times achieved using Tesla GPUs, the division is using almost 200 times less electricity than before. 
 
   With CUDA, we are able to speed up general purpose compute-intensive applications like we do for 3D graphics processing.  Five new consumer applications were launched that are accelerated by the CUDA architecture on our GPUs – Super LoiloScope Mars, for video editing, ArcSoft SimHD, for DVD image enhancement, Nero Move It and Cyberlink MediaShow Espresso, for video format conversion, and Motion DSP vReveal, for real-time video quality enhancement.  Developers are able to speed-up algorithms in areas ranging from nano molecular dynamics to image processing, medical image reconstruction and derivatives modeling for financial risk analysis.  Over 300 universities around the world now teach parallel programming with CUDA and many PC OEMs now offer high performance computing solutions with Tesla for use by customers around the world, including Motorola Inc., Chevron Corporation, General Electric Health Care and General Mills Inc.. Researchers use CUDA to accelerate their time-to-discovery, and popular off-the-shelf software packages are now CUDA accelerated.
 
 MCP Business
 
    Our MCP business, as we have reported it through fiscal year 2010, is comprised primarily of our ION mGPU products.   Our ION family of products addresses the integrated core logic market.  Core logic is the computer’s “central nervous system,” controlling and directing high speed data between or CPU, the GPU, storage, and networks.  High quality, long-term reliability, and top performance are key customer demands of core logic suppliers.
 
    Our ION mGPU products are focused on transforming mainstream Intel PCs into a premium experience typically found in higher priced laptops and desktops. Our strategy is to combine the ION mGPU found in new desktop and notebook PCs with the Intel Celeron, Core 2 Duo or Atom CPUs. These combinations create a platform that enables a premium PC experience in a lower cost and smaller form factor, thus enabling netbooks and all-in-one PCs to play rich media content and popular games in  HD. 
 
    At Computex 2009, our ION platform was awarded the Best Choice award.  We announced 21 ION-related design wins at Computex 2009, and have announced more design wins since then. Additionally, along with Adobe Systems Incorporated, or Adobe, we announced GPU acceleration for the Flash player, bringing Internet video to a new class of low-power PCs and Internet devices. 
 
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   During fiscal year 2010, we began redirecting our development strategy in our MCP business in response to our on-going dispute with Intel Corporation. In February 2009, Intel filed suit against us, related to a chipset license agreement that we entered into with Intel in 2004. In March 2009, we asserted counterclaims against Intel pursuant to which we seek an order declaring that Intel breached the chipset license agreement as well as the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing underlying the license agreements, and seeking, among other things, termination of Intel’s cross license to our technology.   Notwithstanding our belief that the chipset license agreement extends to a component of the new Intel processor architecture referred to as Direct Media Interface, or DMI, we currently have no intention of building a DMI-based chipset while this dispute remains unresolved. As a result, we began redirecting our MCP development resources to other programs. Please refer to Note 13 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements in Part IV, Item 15 of this Form 10-K for further information regarding this litigation

Consumer Products Business
 
   Our CPB is comprised of our Tegra mobile products that support smartphones, smartbooks, tablets, personal media players, or PMPs, internet television, automotive navigation, and other similar devices. CPB also includes license, royalty, other revenue and associated costs related to video game consoles and other digital consumer electronics devices.  
 
   Our mobile strategy is to create a system-on-a-chip that enables entertainment and web experiences that end users currently enjoy on a PC. NVIDIA Tegra mobile products implement design techniques, both inside the chips and at the system level, which result in high performance and long battery life. These technologies enhance visual display capabilities, improve connectivity, and minimize chip and system-level power consumption.
 
During fiscal year 2010, we demonstrated the Tegra 600 Series, our first generation system-on-a-chip that enables an always-on, always-connected HD smartbook that offers playback of advanced multimedia content such as 720p HD video, while at the same time consuming minimal power and allowing users to go days between battery charges. Also during fiscal year 2010, our Tegra product was included in Microsoft’s Zune HD and the Samsung M1, both of which were being sold in the marketplace.
 
During the recent Consumer Electronics Show in January 2010, we announced our next-generation of Tegra processing technology.  Tegra is the processor for the mobile web, specifically designed for the high-resolution needs of tablets.  Tegra combines browsing, streaming 1080p video and Flash 10.1 acceleration with a 3D user interface and days of battery life.   We have multiple next-generation Tegra design wins in tablets, smartbooks and smartphones, with the first of these expected to ship during the second quarter of fiscal year 2011.  Additionally, we have announced that Volkswagen and Audi will use next-generation Tegra starting in fiscal year 2012.In addition, we announced 3D Vision Surround for GeForce, a high-definition 3D stereo solution for the home at the recent Consumer Electronics Show in January 2010. 3D Vision is a combination of wireless glasses, a high-power infrared emitter and software that transforms PC games into full stereoscopic 3D experiences.   Over 420 games now support NVIDIA 3D Vision.
 

 
 
 
 
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Our Strategy
 
 We design our products to enable our PC OEMs, ODMs, system builders, motherboard and add-in board manufacturers, and cellular phone and consumer electronics OEMs to build products that deliver state-of-the-art features, performance, compatibility and power efficiency while maintaining competitive pricing and profitability. We believe that by developing 3D graphics, HD, and video and media communications solutions that provide superior performance and address the key requirements of each of the product categories we serve, we will accelerate the adoption of HD digital media platforms and devices throughout these segments. We combine scalable architectural technology with mass market economies-of-scale to deliver a complete family of products that span from professional workstations, to consumer PCs to tablets, smartbooks and smartphones.
                                  
Our objective is to be the leading supplier of programmable, high-performance GPUs and ultra-low power mobile system-on-a-chip products. Our current focus is on the desktop PC, professional workstation, notebook PC, high-performance computing, and application processor product lines, and we plan to expand into other product lines. Our strategy to achieve this objective includes the following key elements:

    Build Award-Winning, Architecturally-Compatible 3D Graphics, HD Video, Media Communications and Ultra-Low Power Product Families for the PC, Handheld and Digital Entertainment Platforms.    Our strategy is to achieve market segment leadership in these platforms by providing award-winning performance at every price point. By developing 3D graphics, HD video and media communications solutions that provide superior performance and address the key requirements of these platforms, we believe that we will accelerate the adoption of 3D graphics and rich digital media.
 
   Target Leading OEMs, ODMs and System Builders.    Our strategy is to enable our leading PC, handheld and consumer electronics OEMs, ODMs and major system builder customers to differentiate their products in a highly competitive marketplace by using our products. We believe that design wins with these industry leaders provide market validation of our products, increase brand awareness and enhance our ability to penetrate additional leading customer accounts. In addition, we believe that close relationships with OEMs, ODMs and major system builders will allow us to better anticipate and address customer needs with future generations of our products.
 
  Sustain Technology and Product Leadership in 3D Graphics and HD Video, and Media Communications and Ultra-Low Power.    We are focused on using our advanced engineering capabilities to accelerate the quality and performance of 3D graphics, HD video, media communications and ultra-low power processing in PCs and handheld devices. A fundamental aspect of our strategy is to actively recruit the best 3D graphics and HD video, networking and communications engineers in the industry, and we believe that we have assembled an exceptionally experienced and talented engineering team. Our research and development strategy is to focus on concurrently developing multiple generations of GPUs, including GPUs for high-performance computing, and mobile and consumer products using independent design teams. As we have in the past, we intend to use this strategy to achieve new levels of graphics, networking and communications features and performance and ultra-low power designs, enabling our customers to achieve superior performance in their products.
 
 Increase Market Share.    We believe that substantial market share will be important to achieving success. We intend to achieve a leading share of the market in areas in which we don't have a leading market share, and maintain a leading share of the market in areas in which we do have the lead, by devoting substantial resources to building families of products for a wide range of applications that offer significant improvement in performance over existing products.
 
 Use Our Expertise in Digital Multimedia.    We believe the synergy created by the combination of 3D graphics, HD video and the Internet will fundamentally change the way people work, learn, communicate and play. We believe that our expertise in HD graphics and system architecture positions us to help drive this transformation. We are using our expertise in the processing and transmission of high-bandwidth digital media to develop products designed to address the requirements of high-bandwidth concurrent multimedia.
 
 Use Our Intellectual Property and Resources to Enter into License and Development Contracts. From time to time, we expect to enter into license arrangements that will require significant customization of our intellectual property components.  For license arrangements that require significant customization of our intellectual property components, we generally recognize this license revenue using the percentage-of-completion method of accounting over the period that services are performed. For example, we have entered into agreements to jointly develop custom GPUs for gaming consoles and have licensed software development tools.
 
 Revolutionize computing with CUDA and Tesla.  Tesla is a family of GPU computing products that delivers processing capabilities for high-performance computing applications, and marks our entry into the high-performance computing industry. NVIDIA CUDA is a general purpose parallel computing architecture that leverages the parallel compute engine in NVIDIA GPUs to solve many complex computational problems in a fraction of the time required on a CPU. Our CUDA parallel processing architecture can accelerate compute-intensive applications by significant multiples over that of a CPU alone. We are working with developers around the world who have adopted and written application programs for the CUDA architecture using various high-level programming languages, which can then be run at great execution speeds on a CUDA enabled GPU. With CUDA, we are able to speed up general purpose compute-intensive applications like we do for 3D graphics processing.  Developers are able to speed-up algorithms in areas ranging from nano molecular dynamics to image processing, medical image reconstruction and derivatives modeling for financial risk analysis.  We are also working with universities around the world who now teach parallel programming with CUDA and we are also working with many PC OEMs who now offer high performance computing solutions with Tesla for use by their customers around the world. Researchers also use CUDA to accelerate their time-to-discovery, and popular off-the-shelf software packages are now CUDA accelerated.
 
 
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Sales and Marketing
 
 Our worldwide sales and marketing strategy is a key part of our objective to become the leading supplier of programmable, high-performance GPUs and ultra-low power mobile system-on-a-chip products. Our sales and marketing teams work closely with each industry’s respective OEMs, ODMs, system builders, motherboard manufacturers, add-in board manufacturers and industry trendsetters, collectively referred to as our Channel, to define product features, performance, price and timing of new products. Members of our sales team have a high level of technical expertise and product and industry knowledge to support the competitive and complex design win process. We also employ a highly skilled team of application engineers to assist our Channel in designing, testing and qualifying system designs that incorporate our products. We believe that the depth and quality of our design support are keys to improving our Channel’s time-to-market, maintaining a high level of customer satisfaction within our Channel and fostering relationships that encourage customers to use the next generation of our products.
 
 In the segments we serve that purchase our GPUs, the sales process involves achieving key design wins with leading OEMs and major system builders and supporting the product design into high volume production with key ODMs, motherboard manufacturers and add-in board manufacturers. These design wins in turn influence the retail and system builder channel that is serviced by add-in board and motherboard manufacturers. Our distribution strategy is to work with a number of leading independent contract equipment manufacturers, or CEMs, ODMs, motherboard manufacturers, add-in board manufacturers and distributors, each of which have relationships with a broad range of major OEMs and/or strong brand name recognition in the retail channel. In the CPB segment we serve, the sales process primarily involves achieving key design wins directly with the leading handheld OEMs and supporting the product design into high-volume production. Currently, we sell a significant portion of our processors directly to distributors, CEMs, ODMs, motherboard manufacturers and add-in board manufacturers, which then sell boards and systems with our products to leading OEMs, retail outlets and a large number of system builders.
 
 Although as a result of our Channel strategy, a small number of our customers represent the majority of our revenue, their end customers include a large number of OEMs and system builders throughout the world.  Sales to our largest customer, Quanta, accounted for 12% of our total revenue for fiscal year 2010.
 
 To encourage software title developers and publishers to develop games optimized for platforms utilizing our products, we seek to establish and maintain strong relationships in the software development community. Engineering and marketing personnel interact with and visit key software developers to promote and discuss our products, as well as to ascertain product requirements and solve technical problems. Our developer program makes certain that our products are available to developers prior to volume availability in order to encourage the development of software titles that are optimized for our products.

Backlog
 
 Our sales are primarily made pursuant to standard purchase orders. The quantity of products purchased by our customers as well as our shipment schedules are subject to revisions that reflect changes in both the customers’ requirements and in manufacturing availability. The semiconductor industry is characterized by short lead time orders and quick delivery schedules. In light of industry practice and experience, we believe that only a small portion of our backlog is non-cancelable and that the dollar amount associated with the non-cancelable portion is not significant.

Seasonality
 
Our industry is largely focused on the consumer products market. Historically, we have seen stronger revenue in the second half of our fiscal year than in the first half of our fiscal year, primarily due to back-to-school and holiday demand. Revenue in the second half of fiscal year 2010 grew by 31% when compared to revenue from the first half of fiscal year 2010.  While we anticipate that this historical seasonal trend will resume, there can be no assurance of such trend.  For example, this seasonal trend did not occur in fiscal year 2009 where revenue in the second half of fiscal year 2009 declined by 33% when compared to revenue from the first half of fiscal year 2009 due to the worldwide recessionary economic environment at the time.

 
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Manufacturing
 
 Fabless Manufacturing Strategy
 
 We do not directly manufacture semiconductor wafers used for our products. Instead, we utilize what is known as a fabless manufacturing strategy for all of our product-line operating segments whereby we employ world-class suppliers for all phases of the manufacturing process, including wafer fabrication, assembly, testing and packaging. This strategy uses the expertise of industry-leading suppliers that are certified by the International Organization for Standardization, or ISO, in such areas as fabrication, assembly, quality control and assurance, reliability and testing. In addition, this strategy allows us to avoid many of the significant costs and risks associated with owning and operating manufacturing operations. Our suppliers are also responsible for procurement of most of the raw materials used in the production of our products. As a result, we can focus our resources on product design, additional quality assurance, marketing and customer support.
 
 We utilize industry-leading suppliers, such as Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Corporation, or TSMC and United Microelectronics Corporation, or UMC, to produce our semiconductor wafers. We then utilize independent subcontractors, such as Advanced Semiconductor Engineering, or ASE, JSI Logistics Ltd., or JSI, King Yuan Electronics Co., Ltd, or KYEC, Siliconware Precision Industries Company Ltd., or SPIL, and STATS ChipPAC Incorporated, or ChipPAC, to perform assembly, testing and packaging of most of our products.
 
 We typically receive semiconductor products from our subcontractors, perform incoming quality assurance and then ship the semiconductors to CEMs, distributors, motherboard and add-in board manufacturer customers from our third-party warehouse in Hong Kong. Generally, these manufacturers assemble and test the boards based on our design kit and test specifications, and then ship the products to retailers, system builders or OEMs as motherboard and add-in board solutions.
 
Inventory and Working Capital
 
 Our management focuses considerable attention on managing our inventories and other working-capital-related items. We manage inventories by communicating with our customers and then using our industry experience to forecast demand on a product-by-product basis. We then place manufacturing orders for our products that are based on forecasted demand. The quantity of products actually purchased by our customers as well as shipment schedules are subject to revisions that reflect changes in both the customers’ requirements and in manufacturing availability. We generally maintain substantial inventories of our products because the semiconductor industry is characterized by short lead time orders and quick delivery schedules.
 
 Our existing cash and marketable securities balances increased by 38% at the end of fiscal year 2010 when compared with the end of fiscal year 2009. We believe that these balances and our anticipated cash flows from operations will be sufficient to meet our operating, acquisition and capital requirements for at least the next twelve months.


 
 
 
 
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Research and Development
 
 We believe that the continued introduction of new and enhanced products designed to deliver leading 3D graphics, HD video, audio, ultra-low power consumption, and system-on-chip architectures is essential to our future success. Our research and development strategy is to focus on concurrently developing multiple generations of GPUs, including GPUs for high-performance computing, and mobile and consumer products using independent design teams. Our research and development efforts are performed within specialized groups consisting of software engineering, hardware engineering, very large scale integration design engineering, process engineering, architecture and algorithms. These groups act as a pipeline designed to allow the efficient simultaneous development of multiple generations of products.
 
 A critical component of our product development effort is our partnerships with leaders in the computer aided design, or CAD, industry. We invest significant resources in the development of relationships with industry leaders, often assisting these companies in the product definition of their new products. We believe that forming these relationships and utilizing next-generation development tools to design, simulate and verify our products will help us remain at the forefront of the 3D graphics market and develop products that utilize leading-edge technology on a rapid basis. We believe this approach assists us in meeting the new design schedules of PC OEM and other manufacturers.
 
 As of January 31, 2010, we had 3,940 full-time employees engaged in research and development. During fiscal years 2010, 2009 and 2008, we incurred research and development expense of $908.9 million, $855.9 million and $691.6 million, respectively.

Competition
 
  The market for our products is intensely competitive and is characterized by rapid technological change, evolving industry standards and declining average selling prices. We believe that the principal competitive factors in this market are performance, breadth of product offerings, access to customers and distribution channels, software support, conformity to industry standard Application Programming Interfaces, or APIs, manufacturing capabilities, processor pricing, and total system costs. We believe that our ability to remain competitive will depend on how well we are able to anticipate the features and functions that customers will demand and whether we are able to deliver consistent volumes of our products at acceptable levels of quality and at competitive prices. We expect competition to increase from both existing competitors and new market entrants with products that may be less costly than ours, or may provide better performance or additional features not provided by our products. In addition, it is possible that new competitors or alliances among competitors could emerge and acquire significant market share.  A significant source of competition comes from companies that provide or intend to provide GPUs and mobile and consumer products.  Some of our competitors may have greater marketing, financial, distribution and manufacturing resources than we do and may be more able to adapt to customer or technological changes.
 
Our current competitors include the following:

·  
suppliers of discrete MCPs that incorporate a combination of networking, audio, communications and input/output, or I/O, functionality as part of their existing solutions, such as AMD, Broadcom Corporation, or Broadcom, Silicon Integrated Systems, Inc., or SIS, VIA Technologies, Inc., or VIA, and Intel;
·  
suppliers of GPUs, including MCPs that incorporate 3D graphics functionality as part of their existing solutions, such as AMD, Intel, Matrox Electronics Systems Ltd., SIS, and VIA; and
·  
suppliers of system-on-a-chip products that support netbooks, PNDs, PMPs, PDAs, cellular phones, handheld devices or embedded devices such as AMD, Broadcom, Freescale Semiconductor Inc., Fujitsu Limited, Imagination Technologies Ltd., ARM Holdings plc, Marvell Technology Group Ltd, or Marvell, NEC Corporation, Qualcomm Incorporated, Renesas Technology, Samsung, Seiko-Epson, ST Microelectronics, Texas Instruments Incorporated, and Toshiba America, Inc.;

 
9

 
    We expect substantial competition from both Intel’s and AMD’s strategy of selling platform solutions, such as the success Intel achieved with its Centrino platform solution.  AMD has also announced a platform solution. Additionally, Intel and AMD have each announced its intention to integrate a central processing unit, or CPU, and a GPU on the same chip or same package, as evidenced by AMD’s announcement of its Fusion processor project and Intel’s announcement of its multichip packaged solution codenamed Arrandale. If AMD and Intel continue to pursue platform solutions, we may not be able to successfully compete and our business would be negatively impacted.
 
 If and to the extent we offer products in new markets, we may face competition from some of our existing competitors as well as from companies with which we currently do not compete. For example, in the case of our CPB, our Tegra products primarily compete in architecture used in tablets, smartbooks, smartphones, and other handheld consumer devices.  
 
 Our GPU and MCP products are currently used with both Intel and AMD processors.   In February 2009, Intel filed suit against us, related to a patent license agreement that we signed with Intel in 2004. Intel seeks an order from the court declaring that the license does not extend to a new Intel processor architecture and enjoining us from stating that we have licensing rights for this architecture.  If Intel successfully obtains such a court order, we could be unable to sell our MCP products for use with these Intel processors and our competitive position would be harmed.  In addition, in order to continue to sell MCP products for use with these Intel processors we could be required to negotiate a new license agreement with Intel and we may not be able to do so on reasonable terms, if at all.

Patents and Proprietary Rights
 
 We rely primarily on a combination of patents, trademarks, trade secrets, employee and third-party nondisclosure agreements and licensing arrangements to protect our intellectual property in the United States and internationally. Our currently issued patents have expiration dates from March 25, 2010 to June 18, 2029.  We have numerous patents issued, allowed and pending in the United States and in foreign jurisdictions. Our patents and pending patent applications primarily relate to our products and the technology used in connection with our products. We also rely on international treaties, organizations and foreign laws to protect our intellectual property. The laws of certain foreign countries in which our products are or may be manufactured or sold, including various countries in Asia, may not protect our products or intellectual property rights to the same extent as the laws of the United States. This makes the possibility of piracy of our technology and products more likely. We continuously assess whether and where to seek formal protection for particular innovations and technologies based on such factors as:

·  
the location in which our products are manufactured;
·  
our strategic technology or product directions in different countries;
·  
the degree to which intellectual property laws exist and are meaningfully enforced in different jurisdictions; and
·  
the commercial significance of our operations and our competitors’ operations in particular countries and regions.
 
        Our pending patent applications and any future applications may not be approved. In addition, any issued patents may not provide us with competitive advantages or may be challenged by third parties. The enforcement of patents by others may harm our ability to conduct our business. Others may independently develop substantially equivalent intellectual property or otherwise gain access to our trade secrets or intellectual property. Our failure to effectively protect our intellectual property could harm our business. We have licensed technology from third parties for incorporation in some of our products and for defensive reasons, and expect to continue to enter into such license agreements. These licenses may result in royalty payments to third parties, the cross licensing of technology by us or payment of other consideration. If these arrangements are not concluded on commercially reasonable terms, our business could suffer.

Employees
 
   As of January 31, 2010 we had 5,706 employees, 3,940 of whom were engaged in research and development and 1,766 of whom were engaged in sales, marketing, operations and administrative positions. We believe our relationships with our employees are good.
 
10


Financial Information by Business Segment and Geographic Data

   Our Chief Executive Officer, who is considered to be our chief operating decision maker, or CODM, reviews financial information presented on an operating segment basis for purposes of making operating decisions and assessing financial performance.   During the last several fiscal years, we have operated and reported four major product-line operating segments to our CODM: the GPU business, the PSB, the MCP business, and the CPB. However, effective with the first quarter of fiscal year 2011, we will no longer separate our MCP and GPU operating segments as such segmentation will no longer be reflective of the way we manage those businesses. Our GPU business is comprised primarily of our GeForce products that support desktop and notebook personal computers, or PCs, plus memory products. Our PSB is comprised of our Quadro professional workstation products and other professional graphics products, including our NVIDIA Tesla high-performance computing products. Our MCP business, as we have reported it through fiscal year 2010, has been comprised primarily of our ION motherboard GPUs, or mGPU products. Our CPB is comprised of our Tegra mobile brand and products that support tablets and smartbooks, smartphones, personal media players, or PMPs, internet television, automotive navigation, and other similar devices. CPB also includes license, royalty, other revenue and associated costs related to video game consoles and other digital consumer electronics devices.  In addition to these operating segments, we have the “All Other” category that includes human resources, legal, finance, general administration, corporate marketing expenses, charges related to our stock option purchase, restructuring charges and certain vendor price credits not allocated to specific operating segments all of which totaled $386.1 million, $346.1 million and $266.2 million for fiscal years 2010, 2009 and 2008, respectively, that we do not allocate to our other operating segments as these expenses are not included in the segment operating performance measures evaluated by our CODM. “All Other” also includes the results of operations of other miscellaneous reporting segments that are neither individually reportable, nor aggregated with another operating segment. Revenue in the “All Other” category is primarily derived from sales of components.  Certain prior period amounts have been revised to conform to the presentation of our current fiscal year. 

     Our CODM does not review any information regarding total assets on an operating segment basis. Operating segments do not record intersegment revenue, and, accordingly, there is none to be reported.  The accounting policies for segment reporting are the same as for NVIDIA as a whole.  The information included in Note 17 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements in Part IV, Item 15 of this Form 10-K, including financial information by business segment and revenue and long-lived assets by geographic region, is hereby incorporated by reference.

Executive Officers of the Registrant

The following sets forth certain information regarding our executive officers, their ages and their positions as of February 26, 2010:
 
Name
 
Age
 
Position
Jen-Hsun Huang
 
47
 
President, Chief Executive Officer and Director
David L. White
 
54
 
Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer
Ajay K. Puri
 
55
 
Executive Vice President, Worldwide Sales
David M. Shannon
 
54
 
Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary
Debora Shoquist
 
55
 
Executive Vice President, Operations
 
 Jen-Hsun Huang co-founded NVIDIA in April 1993 and has served as its President, Chief Executive Officer and a member of the Board of Directors since its inception. From 1985 to 1993, Mr. Huang was employed at LSI Logic Corporation, a computer chip manufacturer, where he held a variety of positions, most recently as Director of Coreware, the business unit responsible for LSI’s “system-on-a-chip” strategy. From 1983 to 1985, Mr. Huang was a microprocessor designer for Advanced Micro Devices, Inc., a semiconductor company. Mr. Huang holds a B.S.E.E. degree from Oregon State University and an M.S.E.E. degree from Stanford University.
 
 David L. White joined NVIDIA in February 2009 as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. From August 2004 to February 2009, Mr. White served as the Executive Vice President of Finance and Chief Financial Officer of Sanmina-SCI Corporation, a global provider of customized, integrated electronics manufacturing services to original equipment manufacturers in the communications, enterprise computing and medical industries and various other end markets. From 2003 to 2004, Mr. White was Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Asyst Technologies, Inc., a provider of integrated hardware and software automation solutions that enhance semiconductor and flat-panel display manufacturing productivity. Mr. White served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Candescent Technologies Corporation, a developer of field emission display technology for next-generation thin flat-panel displays, and held various other positions, from 1995 to 2002. Mr. White holds a B.S. degree from Brigham Young University and an M.B.A. from the University of Washington.
 
 Ajay K. Puri joined NVIDIA in December 2005 as Senior Vice President, Worldwide Sales and became Executive Vice President, Worldwide Sales in January 2009. Prior to NVIDIA, he held positions in sales, marketing, and general management over a 22-year career at Sun Microsystems, Inc. Mr. Puri previously held marketing, management consulting, and product development positions at Hewlett-Packard Company, Booz Allen Hamilton Inc., and Texas Instruments Incorporated. Mr. Puri holds an M.B.A. degree from Harvard University, an M.S.E.E. degree from the California Institute of Technology and a B.S.E.E. degree from the University of Minnesota.
 
 David M. Shannon joined NVIDIA in August 2002 as Vice President and General Counsel. Mr. Shannon became Secretary of NVIDIA in April 2005, a Senior Vice President in December 2005 and an Executive Vice President in January 2009. From 1993 to 2002, Mr. Shannon held various counsel positions at Intel, including the most recent position of Vice President and Assistant General Counsel. Mr. Shannon also practiced for eight years in the law firm of Gibson Dunn and Crutcher, focusing on complex commercial and high-technology related litigation. Mr. Shannon holds B.A. and J.D. degrees from Pepperdine University.
 
 Debora Shoquist joined NVIDIA in September 2007 as Senior Vice President of Operations and became Executive Vice President of Operations in January 2009.  From 2004 to 2007, Ms. Shoquist served as Senior Vice President of Operations at JDS Uniphase Corporation, a provider of communications test and measurement solutions and optical products for the telecommunications industry. From 2002 to 2004, she served as Senior Vice President and General Manager of the Electro-Optics business at Coherent, Inc., a manufacturer of commercial and scientific laser equipment. Her experience includes her role at Quantum Corporation as the President of the Personal Computer Hard Disk Drive Division. Her experience also includes senior roles at Hewlett-Packard Corporation. She holds a B.S degree in Electrical Engineering from Kansas State University and a B.S. degree in Biology from Santa Clara University.


 
 
 
 
11

 
 


Available Information
 
 Our Annual Report on Form 10-K, quarterly reports on Form 10-Q, current reports on Form 8-K and, if applicable, amendments to those reports filed or furnished pursuant to Section 13(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, or the Exchange Act, are available free of charge on or through our Internet web site, http://www.nvidia.com, as soon as reasonably practicable after we electronically file such material with, or furnish it to, the Securities and Exchange Commission, or the SEC. Our web site and the information on it or connected to it is not a part of this Form 10-K.
 

 In evaluating NVIDIA and our business, the following factors should be considered in addition to the other information in this Annual Report on Form 10-K.  Before you buy our common stock, you should know that making such an investment involves some risks including, but not limited to, the risks described below. Additionally, any one of the following risks could seriously harm our business, financial condition and results of operations, which could cause our stock price to decline. Additional risks and uncertainties not presently known to us or that we currently deem immaterial may also impair our business operations.

Risks Related to Our Business, Industry and Partners

We depend on foundries to manufacture our products and these third parties may not be able to satisfy our manufacturing requirements, which would harm our business.
 
        We do not manufacture the silicon wafers used for our products and do not own or operate a wafer fabrication facility. Instead, we are dependent on industry-leading foundries, such as Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Corporation, or TSMC, to manufacture our semiconductor wafers using their fabrication equipment and techniques. A substantial portion of our wafers are supplied by TSMC. The foundries, which have limited capacity, also manufacture products for other semiconductor companies, including some of our competitors.  Since we do not have long-term commitment contracts with any of these foundries, they do not have an obligation to provide us with any minimum quantity of product at any time or at any set price, except as may be provided in a specific purchase order.   Most of our products are only manufactured by one foundry at a time.  In times of high demand, the foundries could choose to prioritize their capacity for other companies, reduce or eliminate deliveries to us, or increase the prices that they charge us.  If we are unable to meet customer demand due to reduced or eliminated deliveries or have to increase the prices of our products, we could lose sales to customers, which would negatively impact our revenue and our reputation.  For example, revenue during the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2010 was somewhat limited by supply constraints related to 40nm products. These supply constraints were driven by limited 40nm wafer foundry capacity as well as challenges related to 40nm process manufacturing yields.  As a result, we have been forced to allocate our available 40nm product supply among our customers.  We expect such supply constraints could have a further limiting impact on our revenue for the first quarter of fiscal year 2011.
 
Because the lead-time needed to establish a strategic relationship with a new manufacturing partner and achieve initial production could be over a year, we do not have an alternative source of supply for our products. In addition, the time and effort to qualify a new foundry would result in additional expense, diversion of resources, and could result in lost sales, any of which would negatively impact our financial results. We believe that long-term market acceptance for our products will depend on reliable relationships with the third-party manufacturers we use to ensure adequate product supply and competitive pricing to respond to customer demand.

 If our Third-Party Foundries are not able to transition to new manufacturing process technologies or develop, obtain or successfully implement high quality, leading-edge process technologies our operating results and gross margin could be adversely affected.>
 
We use the most advanced manufacturing process technology appropriate for our products that is available from our third-party foundries. As a result, we continuously evaluate the benefits of migrating our products to smaller geometry process technologies in order to improve performance and reduce costs. We believe this strategy will help us remain competitive.  Our current product families are manufactured using 0.15 micron, 0.14 micron, 0.13 micron, 0.11 micron, 90 nanometer, 65 nanometer, 55 nanometer and 40 nanometer process technologies.   Manufacturing process technologies are subject to rapid change and require significant expenditures for research and development, which could negatively impact our operating expenses and gross margin.
 
 We have experienced difficulty in migrating to new manufacturing processes in the past and, consequently, have suffered reduced yields, delays in product deliveries and increased expense levels. We may face similar difficulties, delays and expenses as we continue to transition our new products to smaller geometry processes. Moreover, we are dependent on our third-party manufacturers to invest sufficient funds in new manufacturing processes in order to have ample capacity for all of their customers and to develop the processes in a timely manner. Our product cycles may also depend on our third-party manufacturers migrating to smaller geometry processes successfully and in time for us to meet our customer demands.  Some of our competitors own their manufacturing facilities and may be able to move to a new state of the art manufacturing process more quickly or more successfully than our manufacturing partners.   If our suppliers fall behind our competitors in manufacturing processes, the development and customer demand for our products and the use of our products could be negatively impacted.  If we are forced to use larger geometric processes in manufacturing a product than our competition, our gross margin may be reduced.  The inability by us or our third-party manufacturers to effectively and efficiently transition to new manufacturing process technologies may adversely affect our operating results and our gross margin.

 
12

 
We cannot be certain that our third-party foundries will be able to develop, obtain or successfully implement high quality, leading-edge process technologies needed to manufacturer our products profitably or on a timely basis or that our competitors (including those that own their own manufacturing facilities) will not develop such high quality, leading-edge process technologies earlier. If our third party-foundries experience manufacturing inefficiencies, we may fail to achieve acceptable yields or experience product delivery delays. If our third-party foundries fall behind our competitors (including those that own their own manufacturing facilities), the development and customer demand for our products and the use of our products could be negatively impacted.  Additionally, we cannot be certain that our third-party foundries will manufacturer our products at a price that is competitive to what our competitors pay.  If our third-party foundries do not charge us a competitive price, our operating results and gross margin will be negatively impacted.
 
Failure to achieve expected manufacturing yields for our products could negatively impact our financial results and damage our reputation.
 
Manufacturing yields for our products are a function of product design, which is developed largely by us, and process technology, which typically is proprietary to the manufacturer. Low yields may result from either product design or process technology failure.  We do not know a yield problem exists until our design is manufactured.  When a yield issue is identified, the product is analyzed and tested to determine the cause. As a result, yield problems may not be identified until well into the production process. Resolution of yield problems requires cooperation by, and communication between, us and the manufacturer. Because of our potentially limited access to wafer foundry capacity, decreases in manufacturing yields could result in an increase in our costs and force us to allocate our available product supply among our customers. Lower than expected yields could potentially harm customer relationships, our reputation and our financial results.
 
Global economic conditions may adversely affect our business and financial results.

Our operations and performance depend significantly on worldwide economic conditions. Uncertainty about current global economic conditions poses a continuing risk to our business as consumers and businesses have postponed spending in response to tighter credit, negative financial news and/or declines in income or asset values, which have reduced the demand for our products. Other factors that could depress demand for our products in the future include conditions in the residential real estate and mortgage markets, expectations for inflation, labor and healthcare costs, access to credit, consumer confidence, and other macroeconomic factors affecting consumer and business spending behavior. These and other economic factors have reduced demand for our products and could further harm our business, financial condition and operating results.
 
The financial turmoil that affected the banking system and financial markets and the increased possibility that financial institutions may consolidate or go out of business resulted in a tightening in the credit markets, a low level of liquidity in many financial markets, and extreme volatility in fixed income, credit, currency and equity markets. There could be a number of follow-on effects from the credit crisis on our business, including insolvency of key suppliers resulting in product delays; inability of customers, including channel partners, to obtain credit to finance purchases of our products and/or customer, including channel partner, insolvencies; and failure of financial institutions, which may negatively impact our treasury operations. Other income and expense could also vary materially from expectations depending on gains or losses realized on the sale or exchange of financial instruments; impairment charges related to debt securities as well as equity and other investments; interest rates; and cash, cash equivalent and marketable securities balances. Volatility in the financial markets and overall economic uncertainty increases the risk that the actual amounts realized in the future on our financial instruments could differ significantly from the fair values currently assigned to them.

Our business is cyclical in nature and has experienced severe downturns that have, and may in the future, materially adversely affect our business and financial results.
 
Our business is directly affected by market conditions in the highly cyclical semiconductor industry. The semiconductor industry has been adversely affected by many factors, including the recent global downturn, ongoing efforts by our customers to reduce their spending, diminished product demand, increased inventory levels, lower average selling prices, uncertainty regarding long-term growth rates and underlying financial health and increased competition. These factors, could, among other things, limit our ability to maintain or increase our sales or recognize revenue and in turn adversely affect our business, operating results and financial condition.  If our actions to reduce our operating expenses to sufficiently offset these factors during this downturn are unsuccessful, our operating results will suffer.
 
 
13

 
Our failure to estimate customer demand properly could adversely affect our financial results.
 
 We manufacture our products based on forecasts of customer demand in order to have shorter shipment lead times and quicker delivery schedules for our customers.  As a result, we may build inventories for anticipated periods of growth which do not occur or may build inventory anticipating demand for a product that does not materialize. In forecasting demand, we make multiple assumptions any of which may prove to be incorrect. Situations that may result in excess or obsolete inventory include:
 
·  
changes in business and economic conditions, including downturns in the semiconductor industry and/or overall economy;
·  
changes in consumer confidence caused by changes in market conditions, including changes in the credit market, expectations for inflation, and energy prices;
·  
if there were a sudden and significant decrease in demand for our products;
·  
if there were a higher incidence of inventory obsolescence because of rapidly changing technology and customer requirements;
·  
if we fail to estimate customer demand properly for our older products as our newer products are introduced; or
·  
if our competition were to take unexpected competitive pricing actions.

Any inability to sell products to which we have devoted resources could harm our business. In addition, cancellation or deferral of customer purchase orders could result in our holding excess inventory, which could adversely affect our gross margin and restrict our ability to fund operations. Additionally, because we often sell a substantial portion of our products in the last month of each quarter, we may not be able to reduce our inventory purchase commitments in a timely manner in response to customer cancellations or deferrals. We could be subject to excess or obsolete inventories and be required to take corresponding inventory write-downs and/or a reduction in average selling prices if growth slows or does not materialize, or if we incorrectly forecast product demand, which could negatively impact our financial results.
 
Conversely, if we underestimate our customers’ demand for our products, our third party manufacturing partners may not have adequate lead-time or capacity to increase production for us meaning that we may not be able to obtain sufficient inventory to fill our customers’ orders on a timely basis. Even if we are able to increase production levels to meet customer demand, we may not be able to do so in a cost effective or timely manner. Inability to fulfill our customers’ orders on a timely basis, or at all, could damage our customer relationships, result in lost revenue, cause a loss in market share, impact our customer relationships or damage our reputation, any of which could adversely impact our business.

Because our gross margin for any period depends on a number of factors, our failure to forecast changes in any of these factors could adversely affect our gross margin.
 
We are focused on improving our gross margin. Our gross margin for any period depends on a number of factors, including:
 
·  
the mix of our products sold;
·  
average selling prices;
·  
introduction of new products;
·  
product transitions;
·  
sales discounts;
·  
unexpected pricing actions by our competitors;
·  
the cost of product components; and
·  
the yield of wafers produced by the foundries that manufacture our products.
  
If we do not correctly forecast the impact of any of the relevant factors on our business, there may not be any actions we can take or we may not be able to take any possible actions in time to counteract any negative impact on our gross margin.   In addition, if we are unable to meet our gross margin target for any period or the target set by analysts, the trading price of our common stock may decline. 
 
14

 
Our revenue may fluctuate while our operating expenses are relatively fixed, which makes our results difficult to predict and could cause our results to fall short of expectations.
 
Demand for many of our revenue components fluctuates and is difficult to predict, and our operating expenses are relatively fixed and largely independent of revenue. Therefore, it is difficult for us to accurately forecast revenue and profits or losses in any particular period.  Our operating expenses, which are comprised of research and development expenses, sales, general and administrative expenses and restructuring charges represented 38%, 36% and 25% of our total revenue for fiscal years 2010, 2009 and 2008, respectively.  Since we often recognize a substantial portion of our revenue in the last month of each quarter, we may not be able to adjust our operating expenses in a timely manner in response to any unanticipated revenue shortfalls in any quarter. Further, some of our operating expenses, like stock-based compensation expense can only be adjusted over a longer period of time and cannot be reduced during a quarter.  If we are unable to reduce operating expenses quickly in response to any revenue shortfalls, our financial results will be negatively impacted.
 
Any one or more of the risks discussed in this Annual Report on Form 10-K or other factors could prevent us from achieving our expected future revenue or net income. Accordingly, we believe that period-to-period comparisons of our results of operations should not be relied upon as an indication of future performance. Similarly, the results of any quarterly or full fiscal year period are not necessarily indicative of results to be expected for a subsequent quarter or a full fiscal year. As a result, it is possible that in some quarters our operating results could be below the expectations of securities analysts or investors, which could cause the trading price of our common stock to decline. We believe that our quarterly and annual results of operations may continue to be affected by a variety of factors that could harm our revenue, gross profit and results of operations.

 If we are unable to sell our MCP products for use with certain Intel processors, we may not be able to successfully compete and our business would be negatively impacted.

Our MCP products are currently used with both Intel and AMD processors.   Our revenue from MCP products represented 26% of our total revenue for fiscal year 2010.  In February 2009, Intel filed suit against us related to a patent license agreement that we signed with Intel in 2004. Intel seeks an order from the court declaring that the license does not extend to a new Intel processor architecture and enjoining us from stating that we have licensing rights for this architecture.  If Intel successfully obtains such a court order, we could be unable to sell our MCP products for use with these Intel processors and our competitive position and financial results would be adversely impacted.  In addition, in order to continue to sell MCP products for use with these Intel processors we could be required to negotiate a new license agreement with Intel and we may not be able to do so on reasonable terms, if at all.  

 In March 2009, we asserted counterclaims against Intel pursuant to which we seek an order declaring that we have the right to sell certain chipset products with Intel’s processors under the chipset license agreement, and enjoining Intel from interfering with our licensing rights.  We are also seeking a finding that Intel has materially breached its obligations under the chipset license agreement, and are requesting various remedies for that breach, including termination of Intel’s cross licensing rights.  Notwithstanding our belief that the chipset license agreement extends to a component of the new Intel processor architecture referred to as Direct Media Interface, or DMI, we currently have no intentions of building a DMI-based chipset while this dispute remains unresolved.
 
If we are unable to compete in the markets for our products, our financial results could be adversely impacted.
 
The market for our products is characterized by rapid technological change, new product introductions, evolving industry standards and declining average selling prices.  We believe that the principal competitive factors in this market are performance, breadth of product offerings, access to customers and distribution channels, software support, conformity to industry standard Application Programming Interface, or APIs, manufacturing capabilities, price of processors, and total system costs. We believe that our ability to remain competitive will depend on how well we are able to anticipate the features and functions that customers will demand and whether we are able to deliver consistent volumes of our products at acceptable levels of quality and at competitive prices. We expect competition to increase from both existing competitors and new market entrants with products that may be less costly than ours, or may provide better performance or additional features not provided by our products. In addition, it is possible that new competitors or alliances among competitors could emerge and acquire significant market share.  We believe other factors impacting our ability to compete are: 

·  
product performance;
·  
product bundling by competitors with multiple product lines;
·  
breadth and frequency of product offerings;
·  
access to customers and distribution channels;
·  
backward-forward software support;
·  
conformity to industry standard application programming interfaces; and
·  
manufacturing capabilities.

    A significant source of competition is from companies that provide or intend to provide GPUs and mobile and consumer products.  Some of our competitors may have greater marketing, financial, distribution and manufacturing resources than we do and may be more able to adapt to customer or technological changes.
  
15

           
     Our current competitors include the following:
 
·  
suppliers of GPUs, including MCPs that incorporate 3D graphics functionality as part of their existing solutions, such as AMD, Intel, Matrox Electronics Systems Ltd., SIS, and VIA; and
·  
suppliers of system-on-a-chip products that support netbooks, PNDs, PMPs, PDAs, cellular phones, handheld devices or embedded devices such as AMD, Broadcom, Freescale Semiconductor Inc., Fujitsu Limited, Imagination Technologies Ltd., ARM Holdings plc, Marvell Technology Group Ltd, or Marvell, NEC Corporation, Qualcomm Incorporated, Renesas Technology, Samsung, Seiko-Epson, ST Microelectronics, Texas Instruments Incorporated, and Toshiba America, Inc.;
 
 If and to the extent we offer products in new markets, we may face competition from some of our existing competitors as well as from companies with which we currently do not compete. For example, in the case of our CPB, our Tegra products primarily compete in tablets, smartbooks, smartphones and other handheld consumer devices.  We cannot accurately predict if we will compete successfully in any of the new markets we may enter. If we are unable to compete in our current or new markets, demand for our products could decrease which could cause our revenue to decline and our financial results to suffer.
 
We are dependent on the personal computer market and its rate of growth in the future may have a negative impact on our business.
 
We derive and expect to continue to derive the majority of our revenue from the sale or license of products for use in the desktop personal computer, or PC, and notebook PC markets, including professional workstations. A reduction in sales of PCs, or a reduction in the growth rate of PC sales, may reduce demand for our products. These changes in demand could be large and sudden. During fiscal year 2010, sales of our desktop GPU products increased by approximately 1% compared to fiscal year 2009.  The increase in the sale of desktop GPU products was primarily driven by unit volume growth in the high-end and mainstream segments as market demand appeared to begin to recover from recessionary conditions that began in the prior year. However, sales of our notebook GPU products decreased by approximately 31% compared to fiscal year 2009. This decline was driven primarily by a combination of the decline in unit demand and in average selling prices, or ASPs, due to increased competition in the marketplace.  Since PC manufacturers often build inventories during periods of anticipated growth, they may be left with excess inventories if growth slows or if they incorrectly forecast product transitions. In these cases, PC manufacturers may abruptly suspend substantially all purchases of additional inventory from suppliers like us until their excess inventory has been absorbed, which would have a negative impact on our financial results.

 As Intel and AMD continue to pursue platform solutions, we may not be able to successfully compete and our business would be negatively impacted.
 
 We expect substantial competition from both Intel’s and AMD’s strategy of selling platform solutions, such as the success Intel achieved with its Centrino platform solution.  AMD has also announced a platform solution.  Additionally, Intel and AMD have each announced its intention to integrate a central processing unit, or CPU, and a GPU on the same chip or same package, as evidenced by AMD’s announcement of its Fusion processor project and Intel’s announcement of its multichip packaged solution codenamed Arrandale.  If AMD and Intel continue to pursue platform solutions, we may not be able to successfully compete and our business would be negatively impacted.
  
Our business results could be adversely affected if the identification and development of new products or entry into or development of a new market is delayed or unsuccessful.
 
In order to maintain or improve our financial results, we will need to continue to identify and develop new products as well as identify and enter new markets.  As our GPUs and other processors develop and competition increases, we anticipate that product life cycles at the high end will remain short and average selling prices will decline. In particular, average selling prices and gross margins for our GPUs and other processors could decline as each product matures and as unit volume increases. As a result, we will need to introduce new products and enhancements to existing products to maintain or improve overall average selling prices, our gross margin and our financial results. We believe the success of our new product introductions will depend on many factors outlined elsewhere in these risk factors as well as the following:

·  
market demand for new products and enhancements to existing products;
·  
timely completion and introduction of new product designs and new opportunities for existing products;
·  
seamless transitions from an older product to a new product;
·  
differentiation of our new products from those of our competitors;
·  
delays in volume shipments of our products;
·  
market acceptance of our products instead of our customers' products; and
·  
availability of adequate quantity and configurations of various types of memory products.

  In the past, we have experienced delays in the development and adoption of new products and have been unable to successfully manage product transitions from older to newer products resulting in obsolete inventory.
 
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To be successful, we must also enter new markets or develop new uses for our future or existing products. We cannot accurately predict if our current or existing products or technologies will be successful in the new opportunities or markets that we identify for them or that we will compete successfully in any new markets we may enter. For example, we have developed products and other technology in order for certain general-purpose computing operations to be performed on a GPU rather than a CPU.  This general purpose computing, which is often referred to as GP computing, was a new use for the GPU which had been entirely used for graphics rendering.  During fiscal year 2008, we introduced our NVIDIA Tesla family of products, which was our entry into the high-performance computing industry, a new market for us.  During fiscal year 2010, we introduced our next generation CUDA GPU architecture, codenamed “Fermi,” which we expect to be the foundation for computational GPUs and  enable breakthroughs in both graphics and parallel computing.  Some of our competitors, including Intel, are now developing their own solutions for the discrete graphics and computing markets. Our failure to successfully develop, introduce or achieve market acceptance for new GPUs, other products or other technologies or to enter into new markets or identify new uses for existing or future products, could result in rapidly declining average selling prices, reduced demand for our products or loss of market share any of which could cause our revenue, gross margin and overall financial results to suffer.
 
 If we are unable to achieve design wins, our products may not be adopted by our target markets or customers either of which could negatively impact our financial results.
 
The success of our business depends to a significant extent on our ability to develop new competitive products for our target markets and customers. We believe achieving design wins, which entails having our existing and future products chosen for hardware components or subassemblies designed by OEMs, ODMs, add-in board and motherboard manufacturers, is an integral part of our future success. Our OEM, ODM, and add-in board and motherboard manufacturers’ customers typically introduce new system configurations as often as twice per year, typically based on spring and fall design cycles or in connection with trade shows. Accordingly, when our customers are making their design decisions, our existing products must have competitive performance levels or we must timely introduce new products in order to be included in our customers’ new system configurations. This requires that we:
 
·  
anticipate the features and functionality that customers and consumers will demand;
·  
incorporate those features and functionalities into products that meet the exacting design requirements of  our  customers;
·  
price our products competitively; and
·  
introduce products to the market within our customers’ limited design cycles.
 
If OEMs, ODMs, and add-in board and motherboard manufacturers do not include our products in their systems, they will typically not use our products in their systems until at least the next design configuration. Therefore, we endeavor to develop close relationships with our OEMs and ODMs, in an attempt to better anticipate and address customer needs in new products so that we will achieve design wins.

Our ability to achieve design wins also depends in part on our ability to identify and be compliant with evolving industry standards. Unanticipated changes in industry standards could render our products incompatible with products developed by major hardware manufacturers and software developers like AMD, Intel and Microsoft Corporation, or Microsoft.  If our products are not in compliance with prevailing industry standards, we may not be designed into our customers’ product designs.  However, to be compliant with changes to industry standards, we may have to invest significant time and resources to redesign our products which could negatively impact our gross margin or operating results. If we are unable to achieve new design wins for existing or new customers, we may lose market share and our operating results would be negatively impacted.

If our products do not continue to be adopted by our target markets or if the demand for new and innovative products in our target markets decreases, our business and operating results would suffer.
 
 Our success depends in part upon continued broad adoption of our processors for 3D graphics and multimedia in desktop PC, notebook PC, workstation, high-performance computing, netbooks, smartbooks, tablets, smartphones, and video game console applications. The market for processors has been characterized by unpredictable and sometimes rapid shifts in the popularity of products, often caused by the publication of competitive industry benchmark results, changes in pricing of dynamic random-access memory devices and other changes in the total system cost of add-in boards, as well as by severe price competition and by frequent new technology and product introductions. Broad market acceptance is difficult to achieve and such market acceptance, if achieved, is difficult to sustain due to intense competition and frequent new technology and product introductions. Our GPU and MCP businesses together comprised approximately 79%, 75% and 79% of our revenue for fiscal years 2010, 2009 and 2008, respectively.  As such, our financial results would suffer if for any reason our current or future GPUs or MCPs do not continue to achieve widespread adoption by the PC market. If we are unable to complete the timely development of new products or if we were unable to successfully and cost-effectively manufacture and deliver products that meet the requirements of the desktop PC, notebook PC, workstation, high-performance computing, netbook, smartbooks, tablets, smartphones, and video game console markets, we may experience a decrease in revenue which could negatively impact our operating results.
 
 Additionally, there can be no assurance that the industry will continue to demand new products with improved standards, features or performance. If our customers, OEMs, ODMs, add-in-card and motherboard manufacturers, system builders and consumer electronics companies, do not continue to design products that require more advanced or efficient processors and/or the market does not continue to demand new products with increased performance, features, functionality or standards, sales of our products could decline and the markets for our products could shrink. Decreased sales of our products for these markets could negatively impact our revenue and our financial results.
 
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If our products contain significant defects our financial results could be negatively impacted, our reputation could be damaged and we could lose market share.

Our products are complex and may contain defects or experience failures due to any number of issues in design, fabrication, packaging, materials and/or use within a system. If any of our products or technologies contains a defect, compatibility issue or other error, we may have to invest additional research and development efforts to find and correct the issue.  Such efforts could divert our engineers’ attention from the development of new products and technologies and could increase our operating costs and reduce our gross margin. In addition, an error or defect in new products or releases or related software drivers after commencement of commercial shipments could result in failure to achieve market acceptance or loss of design wins. Also, we may be required to reimburse customers, including our customers’ costs to repair or replace products in the field. A product recall or a significant number of product returns could be expensive, damage our reputation, could result in the shifting of business to our competitors and could result in litigation against us. Costs associated with correcting defects, errors, bugs or other issues could be significant and could materially harm our financial results.   For example, during fiscal year 2010, we recorded an additional net warranty charge of $95.8 million against cost of revenue to cover anticipated customer warranty, repair, return, replacement and other costs arising from a weak die/packaging material set in certain versions of our previous generation MCP and GPU products used in notebook systems. This charge included an additional accrual of $164.4 million for related estimated costs, offset by reimbursements from insurance carriers of $68.6 million that we recorded against cost of revenue during fiscal year 2010. During fiscal year 2009, we recorded a net warranty charge of $189.3 million charge against cost of revenue for the purpose of supporting the product repair costs of our affected customers around the world.  This charge included an accrual of $196.0 million for related estimated costs, offset by reimbursements from insurance carriers of $6.7 million that we recorded against cost of revenue during fiscal year 2009. In September, October and November 2008, several putative class action lawsuits were filed against us, asserting various claims related to the impacted MCP and GPU products.  Please refer to the risk entitled “We are subject to litigation arising from alleged defects in our previous generation MCP and GPU products, which if determined adversely to us, could harm our business” for the risk associated with this litigation.

We may have to invest more resources in research and development than anticipated, which could increase our operating expenses and negatively impact our operating results.

If new competitors, technological advances by existing competitors, our entry into new markets, or other competitive factors require us to invest significantly greater resources than anticipated in our research and development efforts, our operating expenses would increase.  Our engineering and technical resources include 3,940 full-time employees as of January 31, 2010 and 3,772 employees as of January 25, 2009, respectively.  Research and development expenditures were $908.9 million, $855.9 million and $691.6 million, for fiscal years 2010, 2009 and 2008, respectively.  Research and development expenses included stock-based compensation expense of $151.8 million, $98.0 million and $76.6 million for fiscal years 2010, 2009 and 2008, respectively.  If we are required to invest significantly greater resources than anticipated in research and development efforts without a corresponding increase in revenue, our operating results could decline. Research and development expenses are likely to fluctuate from time to time to the extent we make periodic incremental investments in research and development and these investments may be independent of our level of revenue which could negatively impact our financial results. In order to remain competitive, we anticipate that we will continue to devote substantial resources to research and development, and we expect these expenses to increase in absolute dollars in the foreseeable future due to the increased complexity and the greater number of products under development.
 
 We are dependent on third parties for assembly, testing and packaging of our products, which reduces our control over the delivery schedule, product quantity or product quality.
 
Our products are assembled, tested and packaged by independent subcontractors, such as Advanced Semiconductor Engineering, Inc., Amkor Technology, JSI Logistics, Ltd., King Yuan Electronics Co., Siliconware Precision Industries Co. Ltd., and ChipPAC. As a result, we do not directly control our product delivery schedules, product quantity, or product quality.  All of these subcontractors assemble, test and package products for other companies, including some of our competitors.  Since we do not have long-term agreements with our subcontractors, when demand for subcontractors to assemble, test or package products is high, our subcontractors may decide to prioritize the orders of other customers over our orders.  Since the time required to qualify a different subcontractor to assemble, test or package our products can be lengthy, if we have to find a replacement subcontractor we could experience significant delays in shipments of our products, product shortages, a decrease in the quality of our products, or an increase in product cost. Any product shortages or quality assurance problems could increase the costs of manufacture, assembly or testing of our products, which could cause our gross margin and revenue to decline. 
  
 We rely on third-party vendors to supply software development tools to us for the development of our new products and we may be unable to obtain the tools necessary to develop or enhance new or existing products.
 
 We rely on third-party software development tools to assist us in the design, simulation and verification of new products or product enhancements. To bring new products or product enhancements to market in a timely manner, or at all, we need software development tools that are sophisticated enough or technologically advanced enough to complete our design, simulations and verifications.  In the past, we have experienced delays in the introduction of products as a result of the inability of then available software development tools to fully simulate the complex features and functionalities of our products. In the future, the design requirements necessary to meet consumer demands for more features and greater functionality from our products may exceed the capabilities of available software development tools.  Unavailability of software development tools may result in our missing design cycles or losing design wins, either of which could result in a loss of market share or negatively impact our operating results.
 
Because of the importance of software development tools to the development and enhancement of our products, a critical component of our product development efforts is our partnerships with leaders in the computer-aided design industry, including Cadence Design Systems, Inc. and Synopsys, Inc. We have invested significant resources to develop relationships with these industry leaders and have often assisted them in the definition of their new products. We believe that forming these relationships and utilizing next-generation development tools to design, simulate and verify our products will help us remain at the forefront of the 3D graphics, communications and networking segments and develop products that utilize leading-edge technology on a rapid basis. If these relationships are not successful, we may be unable to develop new products or product enhancements in a timely manner, which could result in a loss of market share, a decrease in revenue or negatively impact our operating results.
 
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We sell our products to a small number of customers and our business could suffer if we lose any of these customers.
 
 We have a limited number of customers and our sales are highly concentrated.   We recorded approximately 12% of total revenue from one customer, approximately 11% of total revenue from one customer and approximately 10% of our total revenue from another customer for fiscal year 2010, 2009 and 2008, respectively.  Although a small number of our other customers represent the majority of our revenue, their end customers include a large number of OEMs, and system integrators throughout the world who, in many cases, specify the graphics supplier. Our sales process involves achieving key design wins with leading PC, OEMs and major system builders and supporting the product design into high volume production with key contract equipment manufacturers, or CEMs, ODMs, add-in board and motherboard manufacturers. These design wins in turn influence the retail and system builder channel that is serviced by CEMs, ODMs, add-in board and motherboard manufacturers. Our distribution strategy is to work with a small number of leading independent CEMs, ODMs, add-in board and motherboard manufacturers, and distributors, each of which has relationships with a broad range of system builders and leading PC OEMs. If we were to lose sales to our PC OEMs, CEMs, ODMs, add-in board manufacturers and motherboard manufacturers and were unable to replace the lost sales with sales to different customers, if they were to significantly reduce the number of products they order from us, or if we were unable to collect accounts receivable from them, our revenue may not reach or exceed the expected level in any period, which could harm our financial condition and our results of operations.
 
        Any difficulties in collecting accounts receivable, including from foreign customers, could harm our operating results and financial condition.
 
       Our accounts receivable are highly concentrated and make us vulnerable to adverse changes in our customers’ businesses, and to downturns in the industry and the worldwide economy.  We recorded approximately 20% of our accounts receivable balance from two customers at January 31, 2010 and approximately 38% of our accounts receivable balance from three customers at January 25, 2009.
 
       Difficulties in collecting accounts receivable could materially and adversely affect our financial condition and results of operations. These difficulties are heightened during periods when economic conditions worsen. We continue to work directly with more foreign customers and it may be difficult to collect accounts receivable from them. We maintain an allowance for doubtful accounts for estimated losses resulting from the inability of our customers to make required payments. This allowance consists of an amount identified for specific customers and an amount based on overall estimated exposure. If the financial condition of our customers were to deteriorate, resulting in an impairment in their ability to make payments, additional allowances may be required, we may be required to defer revenue recognition on sales to affected customers, and we may be required to pay higher credit insurance premiums, any of which could adversely affect our operating results. In the future, we may have to record additional reserves or write-offs and/or defer revenue on certain sales transactions which could negatively impact our financial results.

       We obtain credit insurance over the purchasing credit extended to certain customers. As a result of the tightening of the credit markets, we may not be able to acquire credit insurance on the credit we extend to these customers or in amounts that we deem sufficient. While we have procedures to monitor and limit exposure to credit risk on our accounts receivable, there can be no assurance such procedures will effectively limit our credit risk or avoid losses, which could harm our financial condition or operating results.

We are subject to risks associated with international operations which may harm our business.
 
We conduct our business worldwide.  Our semiconductor wafers are manufactured, assembled, tested and packaged by third-parties located outside of the United States and other Americas.  We generated 84%, 87% and 89% of our revenue for fiscal years 2010, 2009 and 2008, respectively, from sales to customers outside the United States and other Americas.  As of January 31, 2010, we had offices in fifteen countries outside of the United States.  The manufacture, assembly, test and packaging of our products outside of the United States, operation of offices outside of the United States, and sales to customers internationally subjects us to a number of risks, including:

·  
international economic and political conditions, such as political tensions between countries in which we do business;
·  
unexpected changes in, or impositions of, legislative or regulatory requirements;  
·  
complying with a variety of foreign laws;
·  
differing legal standards with respect to protection of intellectual property and employment practices;
·  
cultural differences in the conduct of business; 
·  
inadequate local infrastructure that could result in business disruptions; 
·  
exporting or importing issues related to export or import restrictions, tariffs, quotas and other trade barriers and restrictions; 
·  
financial risks such as longer payment cycles, difficulty in collecting accounts receivable and fluctuations in currency exchange rates;
·  
imposition of additional taxes and penalties; and
·  
other factors beyond our control such as terrorism, civil unrest, war and diseases such as severe acute respiratory syndrome and the Avian flu.  
 
 
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If sales to any of our customers outside of the United States and other Americas are delayed or cancelled because of any of the above factors, our revenue may be negatively impacted.
 
Our international operations in Australia, China, Finland, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Korea, Russia, Singapore, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, and the United Kingdom are subject to many of the above listed risks. Difficulties with our international operations, including finding appropriate staffing and office space, may divert management’s attention and other resources any of which could negatively impact our operating results.
 
The economic conditions in our primary overseas markets, particularly in Asia, may negatively impact the demand for our products abroad. All of our international sales to date have been denominated in United States dollars. Accordingly, an increase in the value of the United States dollar relative to foreign currencies could make our products less competitive in international markets or require us to assume the risk of denominating certain sales in foreign currencies. We anticipate that these factors will impact our business to a greater degree as we further expand our international business activities.
 
Conditions outside the control of our independent subcontractors and manufacturers may impact their business operations and thereby adversely interrupt our manufacturing and sales processes.

The economic, market, social, and political situations in countries where certain independent subcontractors and manufacturers are located are unpredictable, can be volatile, and can have a significant impact on our business because we may be unable to obtain or distribute product in a timely manner. Market and political conditions, including currency fluctuation, terrorism, political strife, war, labor disruption, and other factors, including natural or man-made disasters, adverse changes in tax laws, tariff, import or export quotas, power and water shortages, or interruption in air transportation, in areas where our independent subcontractors and manufacturers are located could also have a severe negative impact on our operating capabilities. For example, because we rely heavily on TSMC to produce a significant portion of our silicon wafers, earthquakes, typhoons or other natural disasters in Taiwan and Asia could limit our wafer supply and thereby harm our business, financial condition, and operational results.

We are dependent on key employees and the loss of any of these employees could negatively impact our business.
 
Our future success and ability to compete is substantially dependent on our ability to identify, hire, train and retain highly qualified key personnel.  The market for key employees in the technology industry can be competitive.  None of our key employees is bound by an employment agreement, meaning our relationships with all of our key employees are at will.  The loss of the services of any of our other key employees without an adequate replacement or our inability to hire new employees as needed could delay our product development efforts, harm our ability to sell our products or otherwise negatively impact our business.
 
 In addition, we rely on stock-based awards as one means for recruiting, motivating and retaining highly skilled talent.  If the value of such stock awards does not appreciate as measured by the performance of the price of our common stock or if our share-based compensation otherwise ceases to be viewed as a valuable benefit, our ability to attract, retain, and motivate employees could be weakened, which could harm our results of operations.  
 
We may not be able to realize the potential financial or strategic benefits of business acquisitions or strategic investments, which could hurt our ability to grow our business, develop new products or sell our products.
 
We have acquired and invested in other businesses that offered products, services and technologies that we believe will help expand or enhance our existing products and business. We may enter into future acquisitions of, or investments in, businesses, in order to complement or expand our current businesses or enter into a new business market. Negotiations associated with an acquisition or strategic investment could divert management’s attention and other company resources. Any of the following risks associated with past or future acquisitions or investments could impair our ability to grow our business, develop new products, our ability to sell our products, and ultimately could have a negative impact on our growth or our financial results:

·  
difficulty in combining the technology, products, operations or workforce of the acquired business with our business;
·  
difficulty in operating in a new or multiple new locations;
·  
disruption of our ongoing businesses or the ongoing business of the company we invest in or acquire;
·  
difficulty in realizing the potential financial or strategic benefits of the transaction;
·  
difficulty in maintaining uniform standards, controls, procedures and policies;
·  
disruption of or delays in ongoing research and development efforts;
·  
diversion of capital and other resources;
·  
assumption of liabilities;
·  
diversion of resources and unanticipated expenses resulting from litigation arising from potential or actual business acquisitions or investments;
·  
difficulties in entering into new markets in which we have limited or no experience and where competitors in such markets have stronger positions; and
·  
impairment of relationships with employees and customers, or the loss of any of our key employees or customers our target’s key employees or customers, as a result of our acquisition or investment.
  
 
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In addition, the consideration for any future acquisition could be paid in cash, shares of our common stock, the issuance of convertible debt securities or a combination of cash, convertible debt and common stock. If we make an investment in cash or use cash to pay for all or a portion of an acquisition, our cash reserves would be reduced which could negatively impact the growth of our business or our ability to develop new products. However, if we pay the consideration with shares of common stock, or convertible debentures, the holdings of our existing stockholders would be diluted. The significant decline in the trading price of our common stock would make the dilution to our stockholders more extreme and could negatively impact our ability to pay the consideration with shares of common stock or convertible debentures. We cannot forecast the number, timing or size of future strategic investments or acquisitions, or the effect that any such investments or acquisitions might have on our operations or financial results.

  We are exposed to credit risk, fluctuations in the market values of our portfolio investments and in interest rates.
 
 All of our cash equivalents and marketable securities are treated as “available-for-sale” securities. Investments in both fixed rate instruments and floating rate interest earning instruments carry a degree of interest rate risk. Fixed rate securities may have their market value adversely impacted due to a rise in interest rates, while floating rate securities may produce less income than expected if interest rates fall. Due in part to these factors, our future investment income may fall short of expectations due to changes in interest rates or if the decline in fair value of our publicly traded debt or equity investments is judged to be other-than-temporary. We may suffer losses in principal if we are forced to sell securities that decline in securities market value due to changes in interest rates. Future declines in the market values of our cash, cash equivalents and marketable securities could have a material adverse effect on our financial condition and operating results.  
 
At January 31, 2010 and January 25, 2009, we had $1.73 billion and $1.26 billion, respectively, in cash, cash equivalents and marketable securities.  Given the global nature of our business, we have invested both domestically and internationally.  All of our investments are denominated in United States dollars. We invest in a variety of financial instruments, consisting principally of cash and cash equivalents, asset-backed securities, commercial paper, mortgage-backed securities issued by Government-sponsored enterprises, equity securities, money market funds and debt securities of corporations, municipalities and the United States government and its agencies. As of January 31, 2010, we did not have any investments in auction-rate preferred securities.  As of January 31, 2010, our investments in government agencies and government sponsored enterprises represented approximately 62% of our total cash equivalents and marketable securities, while the financial sector accounted for approximately 22% of our total cash equivalents and marketable securities.

The financial turmoil that affected the banking system and financial markets and the increased possibility that financial institutions might consolidate or go out of business resulted in a tightening in the credit markets, a low level of liquidity in many financial markets, and extreme volatility in fixed income, credit, currency and equity markets. There could be a number of follow-on effects from the credit crisis on our business, including insolvency of key suppliers resulting in product delays; inability of customers, including channel partners, to obtain credit to finance purchases of our products and/or customer, including channel partner, insolvencies; and failure of financial institutions, which may negatively impact our treasury operations. Other income and expense could also vary materially from expectations depending on gains or losses realized on the sale or exchange of financial instruments; impairment charges related to debt securities as well as equity and other investments; interest rates; and cash, cash equivalent and marketable securities balances. Volatility in the financial markets and economic uncertainty increases the risk that the actual amounts realized in the future on our financial instruments could differ significantly from the fair values currently assigned to them. As of January 31, 2010, our investments in government agencies and government sponsored enterprises represented approximately 62% of our total investment portfolio, while the financial sector accounted for approximately 22% of our total investment portfolio.  Of the financial sector investments, over half are guaranteed by the U.S. government.  Substantially all of our investments are with A/A2 or better rated securities.  If the fair value of our investments in these sectors was to decline by 2%-5%, fair market values for these investments would decrease by approximately $27-$67 million. 
 
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 Risks Related to Regulatory, Legal, Our Common Stock and Other Matters
 
We are subject to litigation arising from alleged defects in our previous generation MCP and GPU products, which if determined adversely to us, could harm our business.
 
During fiscal year 2010, we recorded an additional net warranty charge of $95.8 million against cost of revenue to cover anticipated customer warranty, repair, return, replacement and other costs arising from a weak die/packaging material set in certain versions of our previous generation MCP and GPU products used in notebook systems. This charge included an additional accrual of $164.4 million for related estimated costs, offset by reimbursements from insurance carriers of $68.6 million that we recorded against cost of revenue during fiscal year 2010.    During fiscal year 2009, we recorded a net warranty charge of $189.3 million against cost of revenue for the purpose of supporting the product repair costs of our affected customers around the world. This charge included an accrual of $196.0 million for related estimated costs, offset by reimbursements from insurance carriers of $6.7 million that we recorded against cost of revenue during fiscal year 2009. Although the number of units that we estimate will be impacted by this issue remains consistent with our initial estimates in July 2008, the overall cost of remediation and repair of impacted systems has been higher than originally anticipated.  The weak die/packaging material combination is not used in any of our products that are currently in production.
 
The previous generation MCP and GPU products that are impacted were included in a number of notebook products that were shipped and sold in significant quantities. Certain notebook configurations of these MCP and GPU products are failing in the field at higher than normal rates.  While we have not been able to determine with certainty a root cause for these failures, testing suggests a weak material set of die/package combination, system thermal management designs, and customer use patterns are contributing factors.  We have worked with our customers to develop and have made available for download a software driver to cause the system fan to begin operation at the powering up of the system and reduce the thermal stress on these chips. We have also recommended to our customers that they consider changing the thermal management of the products in their notebook system designs. We intend to fully support our customers in their repair and replacement of these impacted products that fail, and their other efforts to mitigate the consequences of these failures.
 
We continue to seek access to our insurance coverage regarding reimbursement to us for some or all of the costs we have incurred and may incur in the future relating to the weak material set.  We received $70.5 million and $8.0 million in reimbursements from insurance providers during fiscal years 2010 and 2009, respectively.   However, there can be no assurance that we will recover any additional reimbursement. We continue to not see any abnormal failure rates in any systems using NVIDIA products other than certain notebook configurations. However, we are continuing to test and otherwise investigate other products. There can be no assurance that we will not discover defects in other products.
 
In September, October and November 2008, several putative class action lawsuits were filed against us, asserting various claims related to the impacted MCP and GPU products.  Such lawsuits could result in the diversion of management’s time and attention away from business operations, which could harm our business. In addition, the costs of defense and any damages resulting from this litigation, a ruling against us, or a settlement of the litigation could adversely affect our cash flow and financial results.
  
We are a party to other litigation, including patent litigation, which, if determined adversely to us, could adversely affect our cash flow and financial results.
 
We are a party to other litigation as both a defendant and as a plaintiff.  For example, we are engaged in litigation with Intel Corporation, Rambus Corporation and with various parties related to our acquisition of 3dfx in 2001. Please refer to Note 13 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements for further detail on these lawsuits. There can be no assurance that any litigation to which we are a party will be resolved in our favor. Any claim that is successfully decided against us may cause us to pay substantial damages, including punitive damages, and other related fees. Regardless of whether lawsuits are resolved in our favor or if we are the plaintiff or the defendant in the litigation, any lawsuits to which we are a party will likely be expensive and time consuming to defend or resolve. Such lawsuits could also harm our relationships with existing customers and result in the diversion of management’s time and attention away from business operations, which could harm our business. Costs of defense and any damages resulting from litigation, a ruling against us, or a settlement of the litigation could adversely affect our cash flow and financial results.
 
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Changes in U.S. tax legislation regarding our foreign earnings could materially impact our business.

Currently, a majority of our revenue is generated from customers located outside the United States, and a significant portion of our assets, including employees, are located outside the United States.  United States income taxes and foreign withholding taxes have not been provided on undistributed earnings for certain non-United States subsidiaries, because such earnings are intended to be indefinitely reinvested in the operations of those subsidiaries. In May 2009, President Obama’s administration provided details of previously announced international tax proposals that if enacted into law would have substantially reduced our ability to defer U.S. taxes on such indefinitely reinvested non-US earnings including repealing the deferral of U.S. taxation of foreign earnings, eliminating utilization of or substantially reducing our ability to claim foreign tax credits, and eliminating various tax deductions until foreign earnings are repatriated to the United States.  In October 2009, the Obama administration announced it no longer intended to pursue such proposals outside of a broader initiative to overhaul the corporate tax system, expected in 2010.  However, in February 2010, the Obama administration released its fiscal year 2011 budget with proposed modifications to international tax laws that would again substantially reduce our ability to defer U.S. taxes on indefinitely reinvested non-U.S. earnings, eliminate or substantially reduce our ability to claim foreign tax credits, and eliminate certain tax deductions until foreign earnings are repatriated to the United States. If any of these or similar proposals are constituted into legislation in the current or future year(s), they could have a negative impact on our financial position and results of operations.
   
Litigation to defend against alleged infringement of intellectual property rights or to enforce our intellectual property rights and the outcome of such litigation could result in substantial costs to us.
 
 We expect that as the number of issued hardware and software patents increases and as competition intensifies, the volume of intellectual property infringement claims and lawsuits may increase. We may in the future become involved in lawsuits or other legal proceedings alleging patent infringement or other intellectual property rights violations by us or by our customers that we have agreed to indemnify them for certain claims of infringement.
 
 An unfavorable ruling in any such intellectual property related litigation could include significant damages, invalidation of a patent or family of patents, indemnification of customers, payment of lost profits, or, when it has been sought, injunctive relief.
 
In addition, in the future, we may need to commence litigation or other legal proceedings in order to: 

·  
assert claims of infringement of our intellectual property;
·  
enforce our patents;
·  
protect our trade secrets or know-how; or
·  
determine the enforceability, scope and validity of the propriety rights of others.
  
If we have to initiate litigation in order to protect our intellectual property, our operating expenses may increase which could negatively impact our operating results. Our failure to effectively protect our intellectual property could harm our business.
 
If infringement claims are made against us or our products are found to infringe a third parties’ patent or intellectual property, we or one of our indemnified customers may have to seek a license to the third parties’ patent or other intellectual property rights. However, we may not be able to obtain licenses at all or on terms acceptable to us particularly from our competitors. If we or one of our indemnified customers is unable to obtain a license from a third party for technology that we use or that is used in one of our products, we could be subject to substantial liabilities or have to suspend or discontinue the manufacture and sale of one or more of our products.  We may also have to make royalty or other payments, or cross license our technology. If these arrangements are not concluded on commercially reasonable terms, our business could be negatively impacted. Furthermore, the indemnification of a customer may increase our operating expenses which could negatively impact our operating results.
 
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Our ability to compete will be harmed if we are unable to adequately protect our intellectual property.
 
 We rely primarily on a combination of patents, trademarks, trade secrets, employee and third-party nondisclosure agreements, and licensing arrangements to protect our intellectual property in the United States and internationally. We have numerous patents issued, allowed and pending in the United States and in foreign jurisdictions. Our patents and pending patent applications primarily relate to our products and the technology used in connection with our products. We also rely on international treaties, organizations and foreign laws to protect our intellectual property. The laws of certain foreign countries in which our products are or may be manufactured or sold, including various countries in Asia, may not protect our products or intellectual property rights to the same extent as the laws of the United States. This makes the possibility of piracy of our technology and products more likely. We continuously assess whether and where to seek formal protection for particular innovations and technologies based on such factors as: 

·  
the commercial significance of our operations and our competitors’ operations in particular countries and regions;
·  
the location in which our products are manufactured;
·  
our strategic technology or product directions in different countries; and
·  
the degree to which intellectual property laws exist and are meaningfully enforced in different jurisdictions.

Our pending patent applications and any future applications may not be approved. In addition, any issued patents may not provide us with competitive advantages or may be challenged by third parties. The enforcement of patents by others may harm our ability to conduct our business. Others may independently develop substantially equivalent intellectual property or otherwise gain access to our trade secrets or intellectual property. Our failure to effectively protect our intellectual property could harm our business.
  
Government investigations and inquiries from regulatory agencies could lead to enforcement actions, fines or other penalties and could result in litigation against us.
 
In the past, we have been subject to government investigations and inquiries from regulatory agencies such as the Department of Justice and the SEC.  We may be subject to government investigations and receive additional inquiries from regulatory agencies in the future, which may lead to enforcement actions, fines or other penalties.
 
In addition, litigation has often been brought against a company in connection with the announcement of a government investigation or inquiry from a regulatory agency.  Such lawsuits could result in the diversion of management’s time and attention away from business operations, which could harm our business. In addition, the costs of defense and any damages resulting from litigation, a ruling against us, or a settlement of the litigation could adversely affect our cash flow and financial results.
 
We are subject to the risks of owning real property.
 
During fiscal year 2009, we purchased real property in Santa Clara, California that includes approximately 25 acres of land and ten commercial buildings.  We also own real property in China and India.  We have limited experience in the ownership and management of real property and are subject to the risks of owning real property, including:

·  
the possibility of environmental contamination and the costs associated with mitigating any environmental problems;
·  
adverse changes in the value of these properties, due to interest rate changes, changes in the market in which the property is located, or other factors;
·  
the risk of loss if we decide to sell and are not able to recover all capitalized costs;
·  
increased cash commitments for the possible construction of a campus;
·  
the possible need for structural improvements in order to comply with zoning, seismic and other legal or regulatory requirements;
·  
increased operating expenses for the buildings or the property or both;
·  
possible disputes with third parties, such as neighboring owners or others, related to the buildings or the  property or both; and
·  
the risk of financial loss in excess of amounts covered by insurance, or uninsured risks, such as the loss caused   by damage to the buildings as a result of earthquakes, floods and or other natural disasters.

 
24

 
Expensing employee equity compensation adversely affects our operating results and could also adversely affect our competitive position.
 
Since inception, we have used equity through our equity incentive plans and our employee stock purchase program as a fundamental component of our compensation packages. We believe that these programs directly motivate our employees and, through the use of vesting, encourage our employees to remain with us. 
 
We record compensation expense for stock options, restricted stock units and our employee stock purchase plan using the fair value of those awards in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles in United States of America, or U.S. GAAP.  Stock-based compensation expense was $107.1 million, $162.7 million, $133.4 million for fiscal years 2010, 2009 and 2008, respectively, related to on-going vesting of equity awards, which negatively impacted our operating results.  Additionally, in March 2009, we completed a cash tender offer  to purchase certain employee stock options. A total of 28.5 million options were tendered under the offer for an aggregate cash purchase price of $78.1 million, in exchange for the cancellation of the eligible options.  As a result of the tender offer, we incurred a charge of $140.2 million consisting of the remaining unamortized stock based compensation expense associated with the unvested portion of the options tendered in the offer, stock-based compensation expense resulting from amounts paid in excess of the fair value of the underlying options, plus associated payroll taxes and professional fees.  We believe that expensing employee equity compensation will continue to negatively impact our operating results.
 
 To the extent that expensing employee equity compensation makes it more expensive to grant stock options and restricted stock units or to continue to have an employee stock purchase program, we may decide to incur increased cash compensation costs. In addition, actions that we may take to reduce stock-based compensation expense that may be more severe than any actions our competitors may implement and may make it difficult to attract retain and motivate employees, which could adversely affect our competitive position as well as our business and operating results.
  
 We may be required to record a charge to earnings if our goodwill or amortizable intangible assets become impaired, which could negatively impact our operating results.
 
 Under U.S. GAAP, we review our amortizable intangible assets and goodwill for impairment when events or changes in circumstances indicate the carrying value may not be recoverable. Goodwill is tested for impairment at least annually. The carrying value of our goodwill or amortizable assets from acquisitions may not be recoverable due to factors such as a decline in stock price and market capitalization, reduced estimates of future cash flows and slower growth rates in our industry or in any of our business units. Estimates of future cash flows are based on an updated long-term financial outlook of our operations. However, actual performance in the near-term or long-term could be materially different from these forecasts, which could impact future estimates. For example, if one of our business units does not meet its near-term and longer-term forecasts, the goodwill assigned to the business unit could be impaired. We may be required to record a charge to earnings in our financial statements during a period in which an impairment of our goodwill or amortizable intangible assets is determined to exist, which may negatively impact our results of operations.
 
 Our stock price continues to be volatile and investors may suffer losses.
 
 Our stock has at times experienced substantial price volatility as a result of variations between our actual and anticipated financial results, announcements by us and our competitors, or uncertainty about current global economic conditions. The stock market as a whole also has experienced extreme price and volume fluctuations that have affected the market price of many technology companies in ways that may have been unrelated to these companies’ operating performance.
 
 In the past, securities class action litigation has often been brought against a company following periods of volatility in the market price of its securities. For example, following our announcement in July 2008 that we would take a charge against cost of revenue to cover anticipated costs and expenses arising from a weak die/packaging material set in certain versions of our previous generation MCP and GPU products and that we were revising financial guidance for our second fiscal quarter of 2009, the trading price of our common stock declined.  In September, October and November 2008, several putative class action lawsuits were filed against us relating to this announcement.  Please refer to Note 13 of the Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements for further information regarding these lawsuits. Due to changes in the potential volatility of our stock price, we may be the target of securities litigation in the future. Such lawsuits could result in the diversion of management’s time and attention away from business operations, which could harm our business. In addition, the costs of defense and any damages resulting from litigation, a ruling against us, or a settlement of the litigation could adversely affect our cash flow and financial results. 

25

 
Our operating results may be adversely affected if we are subject to unexpected tax liabilities.

We are subject to taxation by a number of taxing authorities both in the United States and throughout the world. Tax rates vary among the jurisdictions in which we operate. Significant judgment is required in determining our provision for our income taxes as there are many transactions and calculations where the ultimate tax determination is uncertain. Although we believe our tax estimates are reasonable, any of the below could cause our effective tax rate to be materially different than that which is reflected in historical income tax provisions and accruals:

         ·
the jurisdictions in which profits are determined to be earned and taxed;
         ·
adjustments to estimated taxes upon finalization of various tax returns;
         ·
changes in available tax credits;
         ·
changes in share-based compensation expense;
         ·
changes in tax laws, the interpretation of tax laws either in the United States or abroad or the issuance of new interpretative accounting guidance related to uncertain transactions and calculations where the tax treatment was previously uncertain; and
         ·
the resolution of issues arising from tax audits with various tax authorities.

 Should additional taxes be assessed as a result of any of the above, our operating results could be adversely affected. In addition, our future effective tax rate could be adversely affected by changes in the mix of earnings in countries with differing statutory tax rates, changes in tax laws or changes in the interpretation of tax laws.
  
Our failure to comply with any applicable environmental regulations could result in a range of consequences, including fines, suspension of production, excess inventory, sales limitations, and criminal and civil liabilities.
 
 We are subject to various state, federal and international laws and regulations governing the environment, including restricting the presence of certain substances in electronic products and making producers of those products financially responsible for the collection, treatment, recycling and disposal of those products. For example, we are subject to the European Union Directive on Restriction of Hazardous Substances Directive, or RoHS Directive, that restricts the use of a number of substances, including lead, and other hazardous substances in electrical and electronic equipment in the market in the European Union.   We could face significant costs and liabilities in connection with the European Union Directive on Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment, or WEEE. The WEEE directs members of the European Union to enact laws, regulations, and administrative provisions to ensure that producers of electric and electronic equipment are financially responsible for the collection, recycling, treatment and environmentally responsible disposal of certain products sold into the market after August 15, 2005.
 
It is possible that unanticipated supply shortages, delays or excess non-compliant inventory may occur as a result of the RoHS Directive, WEEE, and other domestic or international environmental regulations. Failure to comply with any applicable environmental regulations could result in a range of consequences including costs, fines, suspension of production, excess inventory, sales limitations, criminal and civil liabilities and could impact our ability to conduct business in the countries or states that have adopted these types of regulations.
 
While we believe that we have adequate internal control over financial reporting, if we or our independent registered public accounting firm determines that we do not, our reputation may be adversely affected and our stock price may decline.
 
Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 requires our management to report on, and our independent registered public accounting firm to audit, the effectiveness of our internal control structure and procedures for financial reporting. We have an ongoing program to perform the system and process evaluation and testing necessary to comply with these requirements. However, the manner in which companies and their independent public accounting firms apply these requirements and test companies’ internal controls remains subject to some judgment. To date, we have incurred, and we expect to continue to incur, increased expense and to devote additional management resources to Section 404 compliance. Despite our efforts, if we identify a material weakness in our internal controls, there can be no assurance that we will be able to remediate that material weakness in a timely manner, or that we will be able to maintain all of the controls necessary to determine that our internal control over financial reporting is effective. In the event that our chief executive officer, chief financial officer or our independent registered public accounting firm determine that our internal control over financial reporting is not effective as defined under Section 404, investor perceptions of us may be adversely affected and could cause a decline in the market price of our stock.

 
 We prepare our consolidated financial statements in conformity with U.S.GAAP.  These principles are constantly subject to review and interpretation by the SEC and various bodies formed to interpret and create appropriate accounting principles. A change in these principles can have a significant effect on our reported results and may even retroactively affect previously reported transactions.
 
26

 
Provisions in our certificate of incorporation, our bylaws and our agreement with Microsoft could delay or prevent a change in control. 
 
Our certificate of incorporation and bylaws contain provisions that could make it more difficult for a third party to acquire a majority of our outstanding voting stock. These provisions include the following:

·  
the ability of our Board to create and issue preferred stock without prior stockholder approval;
·  
the prohibition of stockholder action by written consent;
·  
a classified Board; and
·  
advance notice requirements for director nominations and stockholder proposals.
 
        On March 5, 2000, we entered into an agreement with Microsoft in which we agreed to develop and sell graphics chips and to license certain technology to Microsoft and its licensees for use in the Xbox. Under the agreement, if an individual or corporation makes an offer to purchase shares equal to or greater than 30% of the outstanding shares of our common stock, Microsoft may have first and last rights of refusal to purchase the stock. The Microsoft provision and the other factors listed above could also delay or prevent a change in control of NVIDIA.

 
   None.
 
 
   Our headquarters complex is located in Santa Clara, California. During fiscal year 2009, we purchased property that includes approximately 25 acres of land and ten commercial buildings in Santa Clara, California for approximately $194.8 million.  Our original plans for the purchased property included constructing a new campus on the site. We are currently re-evaluating those plans. Additionally, our corporate campus is comprised of eight other leased buildings with six used primarily as office buildings, one used primarily as warehouse space, and the other remaining used primarily as lab space. We also entered into a lease for data center space in Santa Clara in fiscal year 2009.
 
   Outside of Santa Clara, we lease space in Marina Del Rey, San Jose and San Francisco, California; Austin, Texas; Beaverton and Portland, Oregon; Bedford, Massachusetts; Bellevue and Bothell, Washington; Madison, Alabama; Durham, North Carolina; Greenville, South Carolina; Salt Lake City, Utah; St. Louis, Missouri; and Fort Collins and Boulder, Colorado. These facilities are used as design centers and/or sales and administrative offices.
 
   Outside of the United States, we lease space in Hsin Chu City, Taiwan; Tokyo, Japan; Seoul, Korea; Beijing, China;  Shatin, New Territories, Hong Kong; Mumbai, India; Paris, France; Moscow, Russia; Berlin and Munich, Germany; Helsinki, Finland; Theale and London, United Kingdom; Melbourne, Australia; Singapore; Uppsala, Sweden; and Zurich, Switzerland. These facilities are used primarily to support our customers and operations and as sales and administrative offices.  We also lease spaces in Wurselen, Germany; Shenzhen, China; Neihu, Taiwan; and Bangalore and Pune, India, which are used primarily as design centers.  Additionally, we own buildings in Hyderabad, India and Shanghai, China which are being used primarily as research and development centers.
 
   We believe that we currently have sufficient facilities to conduct our operations for the next twelve months, although we expect to lease additional facilities throughout the world as our business requires. For additional information regarding obligations under leases, see Note 13 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements in Part IV, Item 15 of this Form 10-K under the subheading “Lease Obligations,” which information is hereby incorporated by reference.

27

 
 
3dfx
 
On December 15, 2000, NVIDIA and one of our indirect subsidiaries entered into an Asset Purchase Agreement, or APA, to purchase certain graphics chip assets from 3dfx.  The transaction closed on April 18, 2001.  That acquisition, and 3dfx’s October 2002 bankruptcy filing, led to four lawsuits against NVIDIA: two brought by 3dfx’s former landlords, one by 3dfx’s bankruptcy trustee and the fourth by a committee of 3dfx’s equity security holders in the bankruptcy estate.
 
Landlord Lawsuits.

In May 2002, we were served with a California state court complaint filed by the landlord of 3dfx’s San Jose, California commercial real estate lease, Carlyle Fortran Trust, or Carlyle. In December 2002, we were served with a California state court complaint filed by the landlord of 3dfx’s Austin, Texas commercial real estate lease, CarrAmerica Realty Corporation, or CarrAmerica. The landlords both asserted claims for, among other things, interference with contract, successor liability and fraudulent transfer. The landlords sought to recover damages in the aggregate amount of approximately $15 million, representing amounts then owed on the 3dfx leases.  The cases were later removed to the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of California when 3dfx filed its bankruptcy petition and consolidated for pretrial purposes with an action brought by the bankruptcy trustee. 
 
In 2005, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California withdrew the reference to the Bankruptcy Court for the landlords’ actions, and on November 10, 2005, granted our motion to dismiss both landlords’ complaints.  The landlords filed amended complaints in early February 2006, and NVIDIA again filed motions to dismiss those claims. On September 29, 2006, the District Court dismissed the CarrAmerica action in its entirety and without leave to amend.  On December 15, 2006, the District Court also dismissed the Carlyle action in its entirety.  Both landlords filed timely notices of appeal from those orders.

On July 17, 2008, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit held oral argument on the landlords’ appeals.  On November 25, 2008, the Court of Appeals issued its opinion affirming the dismissal of Carlyle’s complaint in its entirety.  The Court of Appeals also affirmed the dismissal of most of CarrAmerica’s complaint, but reversed the District Court’s dismissal of CarrAmerica’s claims for interference with contractual relations and fraud.  On December 8, 2008, Carlyle filed a Request for Rehearing En Banc, which CarrAmerica joined. That same day, Carlyle also filed a Motion for Clarification of the Court’s Opinion.  On January 22, 2009, the Court of Appeals denied the Request for Rehearing En Banc, but clarified its opinion affirming dismissal of the claims by stating that CarrAmerica had standing to pursue claims for interference with contractual relations, fraud, conspiracy and tort of another, and remanding Carlyle’s case with instructions that the District Court evaluate whether the Trustee had abandoned any claims, which Carlyle might have standing to pursue. On April 2, 2009, Carlyle filed a petition for a writ of certiorari in the United States Supreme Court, seeking review of the Court of Appeals decision.  We filed an opposition to that petition on June 8, 2009.  On October 5, 2009, the US Supreme Court denied Carlyle’s petition.
 
The District Court held a status conference in the CarrAmerica and Carlyle cases on March 9, 2009.  That same day, 3dfx’s bankruptcy Trustee filed in the bankruptcy court a Notice of Trustee’s Intention to Compromise Controversy with Carlyle Fortran Trust.  According to that Notice, the Trustee would abandon any claims it has against us for intentional interference with contract, negligent interference with prospective economic advantage, aiding and abetting breach of fiduciary duty, declaratory relief, unfair business practices and tort of another, in exchange for which Carlyle will withdraw irrevocably its Proof of Claim against the 3dfx bankruptcy estate and waive any further right of distribution from the estate.  In light of the Trustee’s notice, the District Court ordered the parties to seek a hearing on the Notice on or before April 24, 2009, ordered Carlyle and CarrAmerica to file amended complaints by May 10, 2009, and set a further Case Management Conference for May 18, 2009.  The parties subsequently filed a stipulation requesting that the District Court vacate the May 18, 2009 Case Management Conference date and other deadlines until after Bankruptcy Court rendered its decision.  At a hearing on May 13, 2009, the Bankruptcy Court ruled that the Trustee had not abandoned any claims against us, and denied the Trustee's Notice of Intention to Compromise Controversy with Carlyle Fortran Trust without prejudice.   Carlyle filed a motion in the District Court for leave to file an interlocutory appeal from the order denying the Notice, which was denied on November 12, 2009.   On January 13, 2010, the District Court, of its own accord, reconsidered and reversed its decision denying Carlyle’s motion for leave to file an interlocutory appeal, and has set the interlocutory appeal for hearing on April 26, 2010.

On July 7, 2009, the parties attended a Case Management Conference in the District Court for both the CarrAmerica and the Carlyle cases.  On July 8, 2009, the District Court issued an order requiring that CarrAmerica file an amended complaint on or before August 10, 2009. CarrAmerica filed its amended complaint on August 10, 2009, alleging claims for interference with contractual relations, fraud, conspiracy, and tort of another. Thereafter, we filed motions directed at dismissing that Fourth Amended Complaint, and CarrAmerica responded by filing a Fifth Amended Complaint.  NVIDIA moved to dismiss the Fifth Amended Complaint, but the District Court denied that motion by order dated January 27, 2010.  In that same order, however, the Court invited the parties to move for summary judgment and set the motions for hearing on May 3, 2010.  NVIDIA intends to prepare and file such a motion.  We continue to believe that there is no merit to Carlyle or CarrAmerica’s remaining claims.
 
28

 
Trustee Lawsuit.
 
In March 2003, the Trustee appointed by the Bankruptcy Court to represent 3dfx’s bankruptcy estate served his complaint on NVIDIA.  The Trustee’s complaint asserts claims for, among other things, successor liability and fraudulent transfer and seeks additional payments from us.  The Trustee’s fraudulent transfer theory alleged that NVIDIA had failed to pay reasonably equivalent value for 3dfx’s assets, and sought recovery of the difference between the $70 million paid and the alleged fair value, which the Trustee estimated to exceed $50 million.  The Trustee’s successor liability theory alleged NVIDIA was effectively 3dfx’s legal successor and was therefore responsible for all of 3dfx’s unpaid liabilities.  This action was consolidated for pretrial purposes with the landlord cases, as noted above.
 
On October 13, 2005, the Bankruptcy Court heard the Trustee’s motion for summary adjudication, and on December 23, 2005, denied that motion in all material respects and held that NVIDIA may not dispute that the value of the 3dfx transaction was less than $108 million. The Bankruptcy Court denied the Trustee’s request to find that the value of the 3dfx assets conveyed to NVIDIA was at least $108 million.

In early November 2005, after several months of mediation, NVIDIA and the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors, or the Creditors’ Committee, agreed to a Plan of Liquidation of 3dfx, which included a conditional settlement of the Trustee’s claims against us. This conditional settlement was subject to a confirmation process through a vote of creditors and the review and approval of the Bankruptcy Court. The conditional settlement called for a payment by NVIDIA of approximately $30.6 million to the 3dfx estate. Under the settlement, $5.6 million related to various administrative expenses and Trustee fees, and $25.0 million related to the satisfaction of debts and liabilities owed to the general unsecured creditors of 3dfx. Accordingly, during the three month period ended October 30, 2005, we recorded $5.6 million as a charge to settlement costs and $25.0 million as additional purchase price for 3dfx.  The Trustee advised that he intended to object to the settlement. The conditional settlement never progressed substantially through the confirmation process.

On December 21, 2006, the Bankruptcy Court scheduled a trial for one portion of the Trustee’s case against NVIDIA. On January 2, 2007, NVIDIA terminated the settlement agreement on grounds that the Bankruptcy Court had failed to proceed toward confirmation of the Creditors’ Committee’s plan. A non-jury trial began on March 21, 2007 on valuation issues in the Trustee’s constructive fraudulent transfer claims against NVIDIA. Specifically, the Bankruptcy Court tried four questions: (1) what did 3dfx transfer to NVIDIA in the APA?; (2) of what was transferred, what qualifies as “property” subject to the Bankruptcy Court’s avoidance powers under the Uniform Fraudulent Transfer Act and relevant bankruptcy code provisions?; (3) what is the fair market value of the “property” identified in answer to question (2)?; and (4) was the $70 million that NVIDIA paid “reasonably equivalent” to the fair market value of that property? The parties completed post-trial briefing on May 25, 2007.

On April 30, 2008, the Bankruptcy Court issued its Memorandum Decision After Trial, in which it provided a detailed summary of the trial proceedings and the parties’ contentions and evidence and concluded that “the creditors of 3dfx were not injured by the Transaction.”  This decision did not entirely dispose of the Trustee’s action, however, as the Trustee’s claims for successor liability and intentional fraudulent conveyance were still pending.  On June 19, 2008, NVIDIA filed a motion for summary judgment to convert the Memorandum Decision After Trial to a final judgment.  That motion was granted in its entirety and judgment was entered in NVIDIA’s favor on September 11, 2008.  The Trustee filed a Notice of Appeal from that judgment on September 22, 2008, and on September 25, 2008, NVIDIA exercised its election to have the appeal heard by the United States District Court, where the appeal is pending.   The District Court’s  hearing on the Trustee’s appeal was held  on June 10, 2009 and the appeal remains under submission.
 
While the conditional settlement reached in November 2005 never progressed through the confirmation process, the Trustee’s case still remains pending on appeal.  Accordingly, we have not reversed the accrual of $30.6 million – $5.6 million as a charge to settlement costs and $25.0 million as additional purchase price for 3dfx – that we recorded during the three months ended October 30, 2005, pending resolution of the appeal of the Trustee’s case.
 
29

 
The Equity-Committee Lawsuit.
 
On December 8, 2005, the Trustee filed a Form 8-K on behalf of 3dfx, disclosing the terms of the conditional settlement agreement between NVIDIA and the Creditor’s Committee. Thereafter, certain 3dfx shareholders filed a petition with the Bankruptcy Court to appoint an official committee to represent the claimed interests of 3dfx shareholders. The court granted that petition and appointed an Equity Securities Holders’ Committee, or the Equity Committee. The Equity Committee thereafter sought and obtained an order granting it standing to bring suit against NVIDIA, for the benefit of the bankruptcy estate, to compel NVIDIA to pay the stock consideration then unpaid from the APA, and filed its own competing plan of reorganization/liquidation. The Equity Committee’s plan assumes that 3dfx can raise additional equity capital that would be used to retire all of 3dfx’s debts, and thus to trigger NVIDIA’s obligation to pay six million shares of stock consideration specified in the APA. NVIDIA contends, among other things, that such a commitment is not sufficient and that its obligation to pay the stock consideration had long before been extinguished. On May 1, 2006, the Equity Committee filed its lawsuit for declaratory relief to compel NVIDIA to pay the stock consideration. In addition, the Equity Committee filed a motion seeking Bankruptcy Court approval of investor protections for Harbinger Capital Partners Master Fund I, Ltd., an equity investment fund that conditionally agreed to pay no more than $51.5 million for preferred stock in 3dfx. The hearing on that motion was held on January 18, 2007, and the Bankruptcy Court approved the proposed protections. 

After the Bankruptcy Court denied our motion to dismiss on September 6, 2006, the Equity Committee again amended its complaint, and NVIDIA moved to dismiss that amended complaint as well. On December 21, 2006, the Bankruptcy Court granted the motion as to one of the Equity Committee’s claims, and denied it as to the others. However, the Bankruptcy Court also ruled that NVIDIA would only be required to answer the first three causes of action by which the Equity Committee seeks determinations that (1) the APA was not terminated before 3dfx filed for bankruptcy protection, (2) the 3dfx bankruptcy estate still holds some rights in the APA, and (3) the APA is capable of being assumed by the bankruptcy estate.

Because of the trial of the Trustee’s fraudulent transfer claims against NVIDIA, the Equity Committee’s lawsuit did not progress substantially in 2007.  On July 31, 2008, the Equity Committee filed a motion for summary judgment on its first three causes of action.  On September 15, 2008, NVIDIA filed a cross-motion for summary judgment.  On October 24, 2008, the Court held a hearing on the parties’ cross-motions for summary judgment.  On January 6, 2009, the Bankruptcy Court issued a Memorandum Decision granting NVIDIA’s motion and denying the Equity Committee’s motion, and entered an Order to that effect on January 30, 2009. On February 27, 2009, the Bankruptcy Court entered judgment in favor of NVIDIA. The Equity Committee has waived its right to appeal by stipulation entered on February 18, 2009, and the judgment is now final.
 
Rambus Corporation

        On July 10, 2008, Rambus Corporation, or Rambus, filed suit against NVIDIA Corporation, asserting patent infringement of 17 patents claimed to be owned by Rambus.  Rambus seeks damages, enhanced damages and injunctive relief.  The lawsuit was filed in the Northern District of California in San Jose, California.  On July 11, 2008, NVIDIA filed suit against Rambus in the Middle District of North Carolina asserting numerous claims, including antitrust and other claims.  NVIDIA seeks damages, enhanced damages and injunctive relief.  Rambus has since dropped two patents from its lawsuit in the Northern District of California.  The two cases have been consolidated into a single proceeding in the Northern District of California.  On April 13, 2009, the Court issued an order staying motion practice and allowing only document discovery to proceed.  On January 27, 2010, the Court entered an order setting a case management conference for March 12, 2010.

        On November 6, 2008, Rambus filed a complaint alleging a violation of 19 U.S.C. Section 1337 based on a claim of patent infringement of nine Rambus patents against NVIDIA and 14 other respondents with the U.S. International Trade Commission, or ITC.  Rambus has subsequently withdrawn four of the nine patents at issue.  The complaint seeks an exclusion order barring the importation of products that allegedly infringe the now five Rambus patents.  The ITC has instituted the investigation and a hearing was held on October 13-20, 2009.  The Administrative Law Judge issued an Initial Determination on January 22, 2009, which found the asserted claims of two patents in one patent family  infringed but invalid, and the asserted claims of three patents in a separate patent family, valid, infringed and enforceable.  This decision will be reviewed by the ITC.  The target date by which the ITC will issue its Final Determination is May 24, 2010.

Rambus has also been subject to other proceedings in the European Union.  NVIDIA is not a party to those proceedings.  However, as a result of those proceedings, for a period of five years from the date of the European Union resolution, Rambus must now offer a license to memory controller manufacturers, sellers and or companies that integrate memory controllers into other products.  The license terms are set forth in a license made available on Rambus' website.   NVIDIA can choose to accept those license terms at any time.  
 
       NVIDIA intends to pursue its offensive and defensive cases vigorously in both actions.

30

 
Product Defect Litigation and Securities Cases

In September, October and November 2008, several putative consumer class action lawsuits were filed against us, asserting various claims arising from a weak die/packaging material set in certain versions of our previous generation MCP and GPU products used in notebook systems.  Most of the lawsuits were filed in Federal Court in the Northern District of California, but three were filed in state court in California, in Federal Court in New York, and in Federal Court in Texas.  Those three actions have since been removed or transferred to the United States District Court for the Northern District of California, San Jose Division, where all of the actions now are currently pending.  The various lawsuits are titled Nakash v. NVIDIA Corp., Feinstein v. NVIDIA Corp., Inicom Networks, Inc. v. NVIDIA Corp. and Dell, Inc. and Hewlett Packard, Olivos v. NVIDIA Corp., Dell, Inc. and Hewlett Packard, Sielicki v. NVIDIA Corp. and Dell, Inc., Cormier v. NVIDIA Corp., National Business Officers Association, Inc. v. NVIDIA Corp., and West v. NVIDIA Corp.  The First Amended Complaint was filed on October 27, 2008, which no longer asserted claims against Dell, Inc.  The various complaints assert claims for, among other things, breach of warranty, violations of the Consumer Legal Remedies Act, Business & Professions Code sections 17200 and 17500 and other consumer protection statutes under the laws of various jurisdictions, unjust enrichment, and strict liability.

The District Court has entered orders deeming all of the above cases related under the relevant local rules.  On December 11, 2008, NVIDIA filed a motion to consolidate all of the aforementioned consumer class action cases.  On February 26, 2009, the District Court consolidated the cases, as well as two other cases pending against Hewlett-Packard, under the caption “The NVIDIA GPU Litigation” and ordered the plaintiffs to file lead counsel motions by March 2, 2009.  On March 2, 2009, several of the parties filed motions for appointment of lead counsel and briefs addressing certain related issues.   On April 10, 2009, the District Court appointed Milberg LLP lead counsel.  On May 6, 2009, the plaintiffs filed an Amended Consolidated Complaint, alleging claims for violations of California Business and Professions Code Section 17200, Breach of Implied Warranty under California Civil Code Section 1792, Breach of the Implied Warranty of Merchantability under the laws of 27 other states, Breach of Warranty under the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, Unjust Enrichment, violations of the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act, Strict Liability and Negligence, and violation of California’s Consumer Legal Remedies Act.  On May 14, 2009, the District Court entered a case schedule order, which set a September 28, 2009 hearing date for an anticipated motion to dismiss, a December 7, 2009 hearing date for anticipated class certification motion, and a July 12, 2010 fact discovery deadline.  The District Court subsequently entered an order resetting the hearing date for an anticipated motion to dismiss for October 19, 2009, based on a stipulation of the parties.  The Court heard arguments on NVIDIA’s motion to dismiss on October 19, 2009, and took the matter under submission.

On November 19, 2009, the Court issued an order dismissing with prejudice plaintiffs causes of action for Breach of the Implied Warranty under the laws of 27 other states and unjust enrichment, dismissing with leave to amend plaintiffs’ causes of action for Breach of Implied Warranty under California Civil Code Section 1792 and Breach of Warranty under the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, and denying NVIDIA’s motion to dismiss as to the other causes of action.  The Court gave plaintiffs until December 14, 2009 to file an amended complaint.  On December 14, 2009, plaintiffs filed a Second Amended Consolidated Complaint, asserting claims for violations of California Business and Professions Code Section 17200, Breach of Implied Warranty under California Civil Code Section 1792, Breach of Warranty under the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, violations of the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act, Strict Liability and Negligence, and violation of California’s Consumer Legal Remedies Act.  The Second Amended Complaint seeks unspecified damages.  On January 19, 2010, we filed a motion to dismiss the Breach of Implied Warranty under California Civil Code Section 1792, Breach of Warranty under the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, and California’s Consumer Legal Remedies Act claims in the Second Amended Consolidated Complaint.  A hearing on this motion is currently scheduled for June 14, 2010.

In September 2008, three putative securities class actions, or the Actions, were filed in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California arising out of our announcements on July 2, 2008, that we would take a charge against cost of revenue to cover anticipated costs and expenses arising from a weak die/packaging material set in certain versions of our previous generation MCP and GPU products and that we were revising financial guidance for our second quarter of fiscal year 2009. The Actions purport to be brought on behalf of purchasers of NVIDIA stock and assert claims for violations of Sections 10(b) and 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. On October 30, 2008, the Actions were consolidated under the caption In re NVIDIA Corporation Securities Litigation, Civil Action No. 08-CV-04260-JW (HRL). Lead Plaintiffs and Lead Plaintiffs’ Counsel were appointed on December 23, 2008. On February 6, 2009, co-Lead Plaintiff filed a Writ of Mandamus with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals challenging the designation of co-Lead Plaintiffs’ Counsel. On February 19, 2009, co-Lead Plaintiff filed with the District Court, a motion to stay the District Court proceedings pending resolution of the Writ of Mandamus by the Ninth Circuit. On February 24, 2009, Judge Ware granted the stay. On November 5, 2009, the Court of Appeals issued an opinion reversing the District Court’s appointment of one of the lead plaintiffs’ counsel, and remanding the matter for further proceedings.  

On December 8, 2009, the District Court appointed Milberg LLP and Kahn Swick & Foti, LLC as co-lead counsel.  On January 22, 2010, Plaintiffs filed a Consolidated Amended Class Action Complaint for Violations of the Federal Securities Laws ("Consolidated Complaint"), asserting claims for violations of Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act, Rule 10b-5, and Section 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act.  The Consolidated Complaint seeks unspecified compensatory damages.  We filed a motion to dismiss the Consolidated Complaint. A hearing on this motion is currently scheduled for June 14, 2010.

31

 
Intel Corporation

On February 17, 2009, Intel Corporation filed suit against NVIDIA Corporation, seeking declaratory and injunctive relief relating to a licensing agreement that the parties signed in 2004.  The lawsuit was filed in Delaware Chancery Court.  Intel seeks an order from the Court declaring that the license does not extend to certain NVIDIA chipset products, and enjoining NVIDIA from stating that it has licensing rights for these products. The lawsuit seeks no damages from NVIDIA.  If Intel successfully obtains such a court order, we could be unable to sell our MCP products for use with certain Intel processors and our competitive position would be harmed.

On March 23, 2009, we filed our answer to Intel's complaint and also asserted counterclaims for declaratory relief, injunctive relief, breach of contract, and breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing.  Our counterclaims seek an order declaring that NVIDIA has the right to sell certain chipset products with Intel's processors under the 2004 licensing agreement, and enjoining Intel from interfering with NVIDIA's licensing rights.  In addition, the counterclaims seek a finding that Intel has materially breached its obligations under the 2004 licensing agreement, and requests various remedies for that breach, including termination of Intel's cross licensing rights.  On April 16, 2009, Intel filed its answer to our counterclaims.

Discovery is proceeding and trial is scheduled to commence before Vice Chancellor Strine on August 23, 2010.   NVIDIA disputes Intel’s claims and intends to vigorously defend these claims, as well as pursue its counterclaims.


No matters were submitted to a vote of our security holders during the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2010.
 

ITEM 5. MARKET FOR REGISTRANT’S COMMON EQUITY, RELATED STOCKHOLDER MATTERS AND ISSUER PURCHASES OF EQUITY SECURITIES
 
 Our common stock is traded on the NASDAQ Global Select Market under the symbol NVDA. Public trading of our common stock began on January 22, 1999. Prior to that, there was no public market for our common stock. As of March 10, 2010, we had approximately 442 registered stockholders, not including those shares held in street or nominee name. The following table sets forth for the periods indicated the high and low sales price for our common stock as quoted on the NASDAQ Global Select Market:
 
   
High
   
Low
 
Fiscal year ending January 30, 2011
           
First Quarter (through March 10, 2010)
 
$
17.84
   
$
15.90
 
             
Fiscal year ended January 31, 2010
           
Fourth Quarter
 
$
18.96
   
$
11.56
 
Third Quarter
 
$
16.58
   
$
12.58
 
Second Quarter
 
$
13.04
   
$
8.33
 
First Quarter
 
$
12.08
   
$
7.21
 
                 
Fiscal year ended January 25, 2009
           
Fourth Quarter
 
$
9.45
   
$
5.75
 
Third Quarter
 
$
14.12
   
$
5.97
 
Second Quarter
 
$
25.35
   
$
10.70
 
First Quarter
 
$
27.59
   
$
17.31
 
 
32

 
Dividend Policy
 
 We have never paid and do not expect to pay cash dividends for the foreseeable future.

Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities

Our Board of Directors has authorized us, subject to certain specifications, to repurchase shares of our common stock up to an aggregate maximum amount of $2.7 billion through May 2010. The repurchases will be made from time to time in the open market, in privately negotiated transactions, or in structured stock repurchase programs, and may be made in one or more larger repurchases, in compliance with the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 Rule 10b-18, subject to market conditions, applicable legal requirements, and other factors. The program does not obligate NVIDIA to acquire any particular amount of common stock and the program may be suspended at any time at our discretion. As part of our share repurchase program, we have entered into, and we may continue to enter into, structured share repurchase transactions with financial institutions. These agreements generally require that we make an up-front payment in exchange for the right to receive a fixed number of shares of our common stock upon execution of the agreement, and a potential incremental number of shares of our common stock, within a pre-determined range, at the end of the term of the agreement.

We did not enter into any structured share repurchase transactions or otherwise purchase any shares of our common stock during fiscal year 2010.  Through January 31, 2010, we have repurchased an aggregate of 90.9 million shares under our stock repurchase program for a total cost of $1.46 billion.  As of January 31, 2010, we are authorized, subject to certain specifications, to repurchase shares of our common stock up to an additional amount of $1.24 billion through May 2010. 

Additionally, during fiscal year 2010, we granted approximately 7.7 million stock options and 7.7 million restricted stock units, or RSUs, under the 2007 Equity Incentive Plan. Please refer to Note 3 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements in Part IV, Item 15 of this Form 10-K for further information regarding stock-based compensation related to our March 2009 stock option purchase and related to equity awards granted under our equity incentive programs.
 

 
 
 
 
33

 
 

 
Stock Performance Graphs
 
 The following graph compares the cumulative total stockholder return for our common stock, the S & P 500 Index and the S & P 500 Semiconductors Index for the five years ended January 31, 2010. The graph assumes that $100 was invested on January 30, 2005 in our common stock or on January 31, 2005 in each of the S & P 500 Index and the S & P Semiconductors Index. Total return assumes reinvestment of dividends in each of the indices indicated. We have never paid cash dividends on our common stock. Our results are calculated on fiscal year-end basis and each of the S & P 500 Index and the S & P Semiconductors Index are calculated on month-end basis. Total return is based on historical results and is not intended to indicate future performance.
                                    
 
   
1/30/2005
   
1/29/2006
   
1/28/2007
   
1/27/2008
   
1/25/2009
   
1/31/2010
 
NVIDIA Corporation
 
$
100.00
   
$
202.14
   
$
275.09
   
$
327.14
   
$
101.09
   
$
201.79
 
S & P 500
 
$
100.00
   
$
110.38
   
$
126.40
   
$
123.48
   
$
75.78
   
$
100.89
 
S & P Semiconductors
 
$
100.00
   
$
115.62
   
$
108.87
   
$
101.45
   
$
60.82
   
$
95.47
 
*$100 invested on 1/30/05 in stock or 1/31/05 in index, including reinvestment of dividends. Indexes calculated on month-end basis.
 
 
 
 
 
34

 
 

 The following graph compares the cumulative total stockholder return for our common stock, the S & P 500 Index and the S & P 500 Semiconductors Index for the period commencing with our initial public offering through the year ended January 31, 2010. The graph assumes that $100 was invested at our initial public offering on January 21, 1999 in our common stock or on December 31, 1998 in each of the S & P 500 Index and the S & P Semiconductors Index. Total return assumes reinvestment of dividends in each of the indices indicated. We have never paid cash dividends on our common stock. Our results are calculated on fiscal year-end basis and each of the S & P 500 Index and the S & P Semiconductors Index are calculated on month-end basis. Total return is based on historical results and is not intended to indicate future performance.                                                          
 
Eleven Year Stock Return
   
1/21/1999
   
1/31/1999
   
1/30/2000
   
1/28/2001
   
1/27/2002
   
1/24/2003
   
1/25/2004
   
1/30/2005
   
1/29/2006
 
1/28/2007
1/27/2008
 
 
 
1/25/2009
   
 
 
 
1/31/2010
   
NVIDIA Corporation
 
 $
100.00
   
 $
158.33
   
 $
311.46
   
 $
846.88
   
 $
2,182.33
   
 $
339.00
   
 $
769.67
   
 $
762.67
   
 $
1,541.67
 
 $
2,098.00
 $2,495.00
$ 771.00
 
$1,539.00
   
S&P 500
 
 $
100.00
   
 $
104.18
   
 $
114.96
   
 $
113.93
   
 $
95.53
   
 $
73.54
   
 $
98.97
   
 $
105.13
   
 $
116.05
 
 $
132.89
  $ 129.82
$ 79.67
 
$106.07
   
S&P Semiconductors
 
 $
100.00
   
 $
119.64
   
 $
180.33
   
 $
145.17
   
 $
112.96
   
 $
50.00
   
 $
99.52
   
 $
74.79
   
 $
86.48
 
 $
81.43
  $75.88
$ 45.49
 
$71.41
   

*$100 invested on 1/21/99 in stock or 12/31/98 in index, including reinvestment of dividends. Indexes calculated on month-end basis.

 
 
 
35

 
 


ITEM 6. SELECTED FINANCIAL DATA
 
The following selected financial data should be read in conjunction with our financial statements and the notes thereto, and with Item 7, “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations.” The consolidated statements of operations data for the years ended January 31, 2010, January 25, 2009 and January 27, 2008 and the consolidated balance sheet data as of January 31, 2010 and January 25, 2009 have been derived from and should be read in conjunction with our audited consolidated financial statements and the notes thereto included elsewhere in this Annual Report on Form 10-K. The consolidated statement of operations data for the years ended January 28, 2007 and January 29, 2006 and the consolidated balance sheet data for the years ended January 27, 2008, January 28, 2007 and January 29, 2006 are derived from audited consolidated financial statements and the notes thereto which are not included in this Annual Report on Form 10-K.  We operate on a 52 or 53-week year, ending on the last Sunday in January.  Fiscal year 2010 was a 53-week year, while fiscal years 2009, 2008, 2007, and 2006 were 52-week years.

   
Year Ended
 
   
January 31,
 
January 25,
 
January 27,
 
January 28,
 
January 29,
 
   
2010
(B,C)
 
2009
(D)
 
2008
(E)
 
2007
(E, F)
 
2006
(G)
 
   
(In thousands, except per share data)
 
Consolidated Statement of Operations Data:
                     
Revenue
 
$
3,326,445
 
$
3,424,859
 
$
4,097,860
 
$
3,068,771
 
$
2,375,687
 
Income (loss) from operations
 
$
(98,945
)
$
(70,700
$
836,346
 
$
453,452
 
$
336,664
 
Net income (loss)
 
$
(67,987
)
$
(30,041
$
797,645
 
$
448,834
 
$
301,176
 
Basic net income (loss) per share
 
$
(0.12
)
$
(0.05
$
1.45
 
$
0.85
 
$
0.59
 
Diluted net income (loss) per share
 
$
(0.12
)
$
(0.05
$
1.31
 
$
0.76
 
$
0.55
 
Shares used in basic per share computation (A)
   
549,574
   
548,126
   
550,108
   
528,606
   
509,070
 
Shares used in diluted per share computation (A)
   
549,574
   
548,126
   
606,732
   
587,256
   
548,556
 
 
   
January 31,
 
January 25,
 
January 27,
 
January 28,
 
January 29,
 
   
2010
 
2009
 
2008
 
2007
 
2006
 
Consolidated Balance Sheet Data:
                     
Cash, cash equivalents and marketable securities
 
$
1,728,227
 
$
1,255,390
 
$
1,809,478
 
$
1,117,850
 
$
950,174
 
Total assets
 
$
3,585,918
 
$
3,350,727
 
$
3,747,671
 
$
2,675,263
 
$
1,954,687
 
Capital lease obligations, less current portion
 
$
24,450
 
$
25,634
 
$
-
 
$
-
 
$
-
 
Total stockholders’ equity
 
$
2,665,140
 
$
2,394,652
 
$
2,617,912
 
$
2,006,919
 
$
1,495,992
 
Cash dividends declared per common share
 
$
-
 
$
-
 
$
-
 
$
 -
 
$
-
 
 
(A) Reflects a three-for-two stock-split effective September 10, 2007 and a two-for-one stock-split effective April 6, 2006. 
(B) Fiscal year 2010 includes impact of charge for a tender offer to purchase an aggregate of 28.5 million outstanding stock options for a total cash payment of $78.1 million. As a result of the tender offer the Company incurred a charge of $140.2 million, consisting of the remaining unamortized stock-based compensation expenses associated with the unvested portion of the options tendered in the offer, stock-based compensation expense resulting from amounts paid in excess of the fair value of the underlying options, plus associated payroll taxes and professional fees.
(C)  Fiscal year 2010 includes an additional net warranty charge of $95.9 million against cost of revenue to cover anticipated customer warranty, repair, return, replacement and other costs arising from a weak die/packaging material set in certain versions of our previous generation products used in notebook systems. This charge included an additional accrual of $164.4 million for related estimated costs, offset by reimbursements from insurance carriers of $70.5 that we recorded.  $68.6 million and $1.9 million of the reimbursement was allocated to cost of revenue and legal expense, respectively.
(D) Fiscal year 2009 includes $196.0 million for a warranty charge against cost of revenue arising from a weak die/packaging material set; a benefit of $8.0 million received from an insurance provider as reimbursement for some of the claims towards the warranty cost arising from a weak die/packaging material set; $18.9 million for a non-recurring charge resulting from the termination of a development contract related to a new campus construction project we have put on hold and $8.0 million for  restructuring charges.
(E) Fiscal years 2008 and 2007 include a charge of $4.0 million and $13.4 million towards in-process research and development expense related to our purchase of Mental Images Inc. and PortalPlayer Inc., respectively, that had not yet reached technological feasibility and have no alternative future use.
(F) Fiscal year 2007 included a charge of $17.5 million associated with a confidential patent licensing arrangement.
(G) Fiscal year 2006 included a charge of $14.2 million related to settlement costs associated with two litigation matters, 3dfx and American Video Graphics, LP, or AVG. 

 
 
 
 
36

 

ITEM 7. MANAGEMENT’S DISCUSSION AND ANALYSIS OF FINANCIAL CONDITION AND RESULTS OF OPERATIONS
 
  The following discussion and analysis of our financial condition and results of operations should be read in conjunction with “Item 1A. Risk Factors”, “Item 6. Selected Financial Data”, our Consolidated Financial Statements and related Notes thereto, as well as other cautionary statements and risks described elsewhere in this Annual Report on Form 10-K, before deciding to purchase, hold or sell shares of our common stock.

Overview

Our Company
 
  NVIDIA Corporation helped awaken the world to the power of computer graphics when it invented the graphics processor unit, or GPU, in 1999.  Expertise in programmable GPUs has led to breakthroughs in parallel processing which make supercomputing inexpensive and widely accessible.  We serve the entertainment and consumer market with our GeForce graphics products, the professional design and visualization market with our Quadro graphics products, the high-performance computing market with our Tesla computing solutions products, and the mobile computing market with our Tegra system-on-a-chip products. During the last several fiscal years, we have operated and reported four major product-line operating segments: the GPU business, the professional solutions business, or PSB, the media and communications processor, or MCP, business, and the consumer products business, or CPB. However, effective with the first quarter of fiscal year 2011, we will no longer separate our MCP and GPU operating segments as such segmentation will no longer be reflective of the way we manage those businesses.
 
  Our GPU business is comprised primarily of our GeForce products that support desktop and notebook personal computers, or PCs, in addition to memory products. Our PSB is comprised of our NVIDIA Quadro professional workstation products and other professional graphics products, including our NVIDIA Tesla high-performance computing products. Our MCP business, as we have reported it through fiscal year 2010, has been comprised primarily of ION mGPU products.   Our ION family of products addresses the integrated core logic market.  Our CPB is comprised of our Tegra mobile products that support tablets and smartbooks, smartphones, personal media players, or PMPs, internet television, automotive navigation, and other similar devices. CPB also includes license, royalty, other revenue and associated costs related to video game consoles and other digital consumer electronics devices.  Original equipment manufacturers, original design manufacturers, add-in-card manufacturers, system builders and consumer electronics companies worldwide utilize our processors as a core component of their entertainment, business and professional solutions.
 
  We were incorporated in California in April 1993 and reincorporated in Delaware in April 1998. Our headquarter facilities are in Santa Clara, California. Our Internet address is www.nvidia.com. The contents of our website are not a part of this Form 10-K.

Recent Developments, Future Objectives and Challenges
 
GPU Business
 
During fiscal year 2010, we introduced our next generation CUDA GPU architecture, codenamed “Fermi”.  We expect the Fermi architecture to be the foundation for computational GPUs, and to enable breakthroughs in both graphics and parallel computing.

During fiscal year 2010, we also delivered our first 40nm GPUs to customers. Because of limited 40nm wafer foundry capacity, plus supplier challenges related to 40nm process manufacturing yields, we have been forced to allocate our available 40nm product supply among our customers. We are currently working with our foundry partners to address these challenges.

 Professional Solutions Business
 
Corporate demand, which comprises a substantial percentage of the demand for our professional workstation products, has recently shown some signs of economic recovery. Workstation product revenue currently comprises a significant portion of our total PSB revenue. Therefore, if corporate demand continues to recover, we expect this trend to continue to have a positive impact on our overall gross profit and gross margin, as the gross margin experienced by our PSB is generally higher than our overall gross margin.
 
37

 
 MCP Business

During fiscal year 2010, we began redirecting our development strategy in our MCP business in response to our on-going dispute with Intel. In February 2009, Intel filed suit against us related to a chipset license agreement that we entered into with Intel in 2004. In March 2009, we asserted counterclaims against Intel pursuant to which we seek an order declaring that Intel breached the chipset license agreement as well as the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing underlying the license agreements, and seeking, among other things, termination of Intel's cross license to our technology.   Notwithstanding our belief that the chipset license agreement extends to a component of the new Intel processor architecture referred to as Direct Media Interface, or DMI, we currently have no intention of building a DMI-based chipset while this dispute remains unresolved. As a result, we began redirecting our MCP development resources to other programs.
 
Consumer Products Business
 
        During fiscal year 2010, we demonstrated the Tegra 600 Series, our first generation system-on-a-chip that enables an always-on, always-connected HD netbook that can go days between battery charges. Also, during fiscal year 2010, our Tegra product was included in Microsoft’s Zune HD and the Samsung M1, both of which were being sold in the marketplace. In addition, we announced our next-generation of Tegra processing technology during the recent Consumer Electronics Show in January 2010.  Tegra is the processor for the mobile web, specifically designed for the high-resolution needs of tablets.  Tegra combines browsing, streaming 1080p video and Flash 10.1 acceleration with a 3D user interface and days of battery life.   We have multiple next-generation Tegra design wins in tablets, smartbooks and smartphones, with the first of these expected to ship during the second quarter of fiscal year 2011.  We’ve also announced that Volkswagen and Audi will use next-generation Tegra starting in 2012.  Additionally, we announced 3D Vision Surround for GeForce, a high-definition 3D stereo solution for the home at the recent Consumer Electronics Show in January 2010. 3D Vision is a combination of wireless glasses, a high-power infrared emitter and software that transforms PC games into full stereoscopic 3D experiences.   Over 420 games now support NVIDIA 3D Vision.
 
Tender Offer

During the first quarter of fiscal year 2010, we announced that our Board of Directors approved a cash tender offer for certain employee stock options. The tender offer applied to outstanding stock options held by employees with an exercise price equal to or greater than $17.50 per share. None of the non-employee members of our Board of Directors or our officers who file reports under Section 16(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, including our former Chief Financial Officer, Marvin D. Burkett, were eligible to participate in the Offer. All eligible options with exercise prices less than $28.00 per share, but not less than $17.50 per share, were eligible to receive a cash payment of $3.00 per option in exchange for the cancellation of the eligible option. All eligible options with exercise prices greater than $28.00 per share were eligible to receive a cash payment of $2.00 per option in exchange for the cancellation of the eligible option.
 
A total of 28.5 million options were tendered under the offer for an aggregate cash purchase price of $78.1 million, which was paid in exchange for the cancellation of the eligible options.  As a result of the tender offer, we incurred a charge of $140.2 million consisting of $124.1 million related to the remaining unamortized stock based compensation expense associated with the unvested portion of the options tendered in the offer, $11.6 million related to stock-based compensation expense resulting from amounts paid in excess of the fair value of the underlying options, plus $4.5 million related to associated payroll taxes, professional fees and other costs.

38

 
 Product Defect

Our products are complex and may contain defects or experience failures due to any number of issues in design, fabrication, packaging, materials and/or use within a system. If any of our products or technologies contains a defect, compatibility issue or other error, we may have to invest additional research and development efforts to find and correct the issue.  Such efforts could divert our management’s and engineers’ attention from the development of new products and technologies and could increase our operating costs and reduce our gross margin. In addition, an error or defect in new products or releases or related software drivers after commencement of commercial shipments could result in failure to achieve market acceptance or loss of design wins. Also, we may be required to reimburse customers, including for customers’ costs to repair or replace the products in the field, which could cause our revenue to decline. A product recall or a significant number of product returns could be expensive, damage our reputation and could result in the shifting of business to our competitors. Costs associated with correcting defects, errors, bugs or other issues could be significant and could materially harm our financial results.

 During fiscal year 2010, we recorded an additional net warranty charge of $95.8 million against cost of revenue to cover anticipated customer warranty, repair, return, replacement and other costs arising from a weak die/packaging material set in certain versions of our previous generation MCP and GPU products used in notebook systems. This charge included an additional accrual of $164.4 million for related estimated costs, offset by reimbursements from insurance carriers of $68.6 million that we recorded against cost of revenue during fiscal year 2010.   During fiscal year 2009, we recorded a net warranty charge of $189.3 million charge against cost of revenue for the purpose of supporting the product repair costs of our affected customers around the world.  This charge included an accrual of $196.0 million for related estimated costs, offset by reimbursements from insurance carriers of $6.7 million that we recorded against cost of revenue during fiscal year 2009.  Although the number of units that we estimate will be impacted by this issue remains consistent with our initial estimates in July 2008, the overall cost of remediation and repair of impacted systems has been higher than originally anticipated.  The weak die/packaging material combination is not used in any of our products that are currently in production.

The previous generation MCP and GPU products that are impacted were included in a number of notebook products that were shipped and sold in significant quantities. Certain notebook configurations of these products are failing in the field at higher than normal rates. While we have not been able to determine with certainty a root cause for these failures, testing suggests a weak material set of die/package combination, system thermal management designs, and customer use patterns are contributing factors. We have worked with our customers to develop and have made available for download a software driver to cause the system fan to begin operation at the powering up of the system and reduce the thermal stress on these chips. We have also recommended to our customers that they consider changing the thermal management of the products in their notebook system designs. We intend to fully support our customers in their repair and replacement of these impacted products that fail, and their other efforts to mitigate the consequences of these failures.

We continue to seek access to our insurance coverage regarding reimbursement to us for some or all of the costs we have incurred and may incur in the future relating to the weak material set.   However, there can be no assurance that we will recover any additional reimbursement. We continue to not see any abnormal failure rates in any systems using NVIDIA products other than certain notebook configurations. However, we are continuing to test and otherwise investigate other products. There can be no assurance that we will not discover defects in other products.

In September, October and November 2008, several putative class action lawsuits were filed against us, asserting various claims related to the impacted MCP and GPU products.  Please refer to Note 13 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements in Part IV, Item 15 of this Form 10-K for further information regarding this litigation.
 
        Subsequent Event

Our Board of Directors has authorized us, subject to certain specifications, to repurchase shares of our common stock up to an aggregate maximum amount of $2.7 billion through May 2010.  Through January 31, 2010, we have repurchased an aggregate of 90.9 million shares under our stock repurchase program for a total cost of $1.46 billion.  As of January 31, 2010, we are authorized, subject to certain specifications, to repurchase shares of our common stock up to an additional amount of $1.24 billion through May 2010.  On March 16, 2010, our Board of Directors further authorized an extension of the stock repurchase program from May 2010 to May 2013. 

The repurchases will be made from time to time in the open market, in privately negotiated transactions, or in structured stock repurchase programs, and may be made in one or more larger repurchases, in compliance with Rule 10b-18 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, subject to market conditions, applicable legal requirements, and other factors. The program does not obligate NVIDIA to acquire any particular amount of common stock and the program may be suspended at any time at our discretion. As part of our share repurchase program, we have entered into, and we may continue to enter into, structured share repurchase transactions with financial institutions. These agreements generally require that we make an up-front payment in exchange for the right to receive a fixed number of shares of our common stock upon execution of the agreement, and a potential incremental number of shares of our common stock, within a pre-determined range, at the end of the term of the agreement. 

39

 
Critical Accounting Policies and Estimates
 
Management’s discussion and analysis of financial condition and results of operations are based upon our consolidated financial statements, which have been prepared in accordance with U.S. GAAP. The preparation of these financial statements requires us to make estimates and judgments that affect the reported amounts of assets, liabilities, revenue, cost of revenue, expenses and related disclosure of contingencies. On an on-going basis, we evaluate our estimates, including those related to revenue recognition, cash equivalents and marketable securities, accounts receivable, inventories, income taxes, goodwill, stock-based compensation, warranty liabilities, litigation, investigation and settlement costs and other contingencies. We base our estimates on historical experience and on various other assumptions that are believed to be reasonable under the circumstances, the results of which form the basis for making judgments about the carrying values of assets and liabilities.
 
We believe the following critical accounting policies affect our significant judgments and estimates used in the preparation of our consolidated financial statements. Our management has discussed the development and selection of these critical accounting policies and estimates with the Audit Committee of our Board of Directors, or Board.  The Audit Committee has reviewed our disclosures relating to our critical accounting policies and estimates in this Annual Report on Form 10-K.  
  
Revenue Recognition
 
Product Revenue

We recognize revenue from product sales when persuasive evidence of an arrangement exists, the product has been delivered, the price is fixed or determinable, and collection is reasonably assured. For most sales, we use a binding purchase order and in certain cases we use a contractual agreement as evidence of an arrangement. We consider delivery to occur upon shipment provided title and risk of loss have passed to the customer based on the shipping terms. At the point of sale, we assess whether the arrangement fee is fixed or determinable and whether collection is reasonably assured. If we determine that collection of a fee is not reasonably assured, we defer the fee and recognize revenue at the time collection becomes reasonably assured, which is generally upon receipt of payment. Our policy on sales to certain distributors, with rights of return, is to defer recognition of revenue and related cost of revenue until the distributors resell the product.

Our customer programs primarily involve rebates, which are designed to serve as sales incentives to resellers of our products in various target markets. We accrue for 100% of the potential rebates and do not apply a breakage factor. We recognize a liability for these rebates at the later of the date at which we record the related revenue or the date at which we offer the rebate. Rebates typically expire six months from the date of the original sale, unless we reasonably believe that the customer intends to claim the rebate. Unclaimed rebates are reversed to revenue.

Our customer programs also include marketing development funds, or MDFs. We account for MDFs as either a reduction of revenue or an operating expense. MDFs represent monies paid to retailers, system builders, original equipment manufacturers, or OEMs, distributors and add-in card partners that are earmarked for market segment development and expansion and typically are designed to support our partners’ activities while also promoting NVIDIA products. Depending on market conditions, we may take actions to increase amounts offered under customer programs, possibly resulting in an incremental reduction of revenue or incremental operating expense at the time such programs are offered.

We also record a reduction to revenue by establishing a sales return allowance for estimated product returns at the time revenue is recognized, based primarily on historical return rates. However, if product returns for a particular fiscal period exceed historical return rates we may determine that additional sales return allowances are required to properly reflect our estimated exposure for product returns.
 
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 License and Development Revenue
 
         For license arrangements that require significant customization of our intellectual property components, we generally recognize this license revenue over the period that services are performed. For all license and service arrangements, we determine progress to completion based on actual direct labor hours incurred to date as a percentage of the estimated total direct labor hours required to complete the project. We periodically evaluate the actual status of each project to ensure that the estimates to complete each contract remain accurate. A provision for estimated losses on contracts is made in the period in which the loss becomes probable and can be reasonably estimated. Costs incurred in advance of revenue recognized are recorded as deferred costs on uncompleted contracts. If the amount billed exceeds the amount of revenue recognized, the excess amount is recorded as deferred revenue. Revenue recognized in any period is dependent on our progress toward completion of projects in progress. Significant management judgment and discretion are used to estimate total direct labor hours. Any changes in or deviations from these estimates could have a material effect on the amount of revenue we recognize in any period.

Accounts Receivable
 
We maintain an allowance for doubtful accounts receivable for estimated losses resulting from the inability of our customers to make required payments.  Management determines this allowance, which consists of an amount identified for specific customer issues as well as an amount based on overall estimated exposure. Our accounts receivable are highly concentrated and make us vulnerable to adverse changes in our customers' businesses, and to downturns in the industry and the worldwide economy.   Our overall estimated exposure excludes significant amounts that are covered by credit insurance and letters of credit. If the financial condition of our customers, the financial institutions providing letters of credit, or our credit insurance carrier were to deteriorate, resulting in an impairment of their ability to make payments, additional allowances may be required that could adversely affect our operating results. This risk is heightened during periods when economic conditions worsen, such as the when the worldwide economy is experiencing a significant downturn. The financial turmoil that affected the banking system and financial markets and increased the risk that financial institutions mighty consolidate or go out of business resulted in a tightening in the credit markets, a lower than normal level of liquidity in many financial markets, and extreme volatility in fixed income, credit, currency and equity markets. There could be a number of follow-on effects from this type of credit crisis on our business, including inability of customers, including channel partners, to obtain credit to finance purchases of our products and/or customer, insolvencies and failure of financial institutions, which could negatively impact our financial results. Furthermore, there can be no assurance that we will be able to continue to obtain credit insurance in the future.

As of January 31, 2010, our allowance for doubtful accounts receivable was $1.0 million and our gross accounts receivable balance was $414.0 million. Of the $414.0 million, $95.9 million was covered by credit insurance and $15.8 million was covered by letters of credit. If the financial condition of our customers were to deteriorate, resulting in an impairment of their ability to make payments, additional allowances may be required and we may have to record additional reserves or write-offs on certain sales transactions in the future. Factors impacting the allowance include the level of gross receivables, the financial condition of our customers and the extent to which balances are covered by credit insurance or letters of credit. We have incurred cumulative bad debts of $0.5 million over the last three fiscal years.  As a result of our low bad debt experience, our allowance for doubtful accounts receivable has ranged between 0.1% and 0.3% during fiscal years 2010 and 2009, respectively. As of January 31, 2010, our allowance for doubtful accounts receivable represented 0.2% of our gross accounts receivable balance.
 
Inventories
   
Inventory cost is computed on an adjusted standard basis; which approximates actual cost on an average or first-in, first-out basis. We write down our inventory for estimated lower of cost or market, obsolescence or unmarketable inventory equal to the difference between the cost of inventory and the estimated market value based upon assumptions about future demand, future product purchase commitments, estimated manufacturing yield levels and market conditions. If actual market conditions are less favorable than those projected by management, or if our future product purchase commitments to our suppliers exceed our forecasted future demand for such products, additional future inventory write-downs may be required that could adversely affect our operating results. Inventory reserves once established are not reversed until the related inventory has been sold or scrapped, so if actual market conditions are more favorable in the fiscal periods subsequent to that in which we record larger than normal inventory reserves, we may have higher gross margins when products are sold. As of January 31, 2010, our inventory reserve was $64.8 million. As a percentage of our gross inventory balance, our inventory reserve has ranged between 7.8% and 19.6% during fiscal years 2010 and 2009. As of January 31, 2010, our inventory reserve represented 16.4% of our gross inventory balance.
 
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Warranty Liabilities

Cost of revenue includes the estimated cost of product warranties that are calculated at the point of revenue recognition. Under limited circumstances, we may offer an extended limited warranty to customers for certain products.  Our products are complex and may contain defects or experience failures due to any number of issues in design, fabrication, packaging, materials and/or use within a system. If any of our products or technologies contains a defect, compatibility issue or other error, we may have to invest additional research and development efforts to find and correct the issue.  Such efforts could divert our management’s and engineers’ attention from the development of new products and technologies and could increase our operating costs and reduce our gross margin. In addition, an error or defect in new products or releases or related software drivers after commencement of commercial shipments could result in failure to achieve market acceptance or loss of design wins. Also, we may be required to reimburse customers, including our customers’ costs to repair or replace products in the field. A product recall or a significant number of product returns could be expensive, damage our reputation and could result in the shifting of business to our competitors. Costs associated with correcting defects, errors, bugs or other issues could be significant and could materially harm our financial results.
   
During fiscal years 2010 and 2009, we recorded $164.4 million and $196.0 million, respectively, as warranty charge against cost of revenue to cover anticipated customer warranty, repair, return, replacement and other associated costs arising from a weak die/packaging material set in certain versions of our previous generation MCP and GPU products used in notebook systems. The MCP and GPU products that were impacted were included in a number of notebook products that were shipped and sold in significant quantities. Certain notebook configurations of these MCP and GPU products were identified as failing in the field at higher than normal rates.

Determining the amount of the warranty charges related to this issue required management to make estimates and judgments based on historical experience, test data and various other assumptions including estimated field failure rates that we believe to be reasonable under the circumstances. The results of these judgments formed the basis for our estimate of the total charge to cover anticipated customer warranty, repair, return and replacement and other associated costs. However, if actual repair, return, replacement and other associated costs and/or actual field failure rates exceed our estimates, we may be required to record additional reserves, which would increase our cost of revenue and materially harm our financial results.

   Income Taxes

  We recognize federal, state and foreign current tax liabilities or assets based on our estimate of taxes payable or refundable in the current fiscal year by tax jurisdiction. We recognize federal, state and foreign deferred tax assets or liabilities, as appropriate, for our estimate of future tax effects attributable to temporary differences and carryforwards; and we record a valuation allowance to reduce any deferred tax assets by the amount of any tax benefits that, based on available evidence and judgment, are not expected to be realized.
 
   United States income tax has not been provided on earnings of our non-U.S. subsidiaries to the extent that such earnings are considered to be indefinitely reinvested.
 
   Our calculation of current and deferred tax assets and liabilities is based on certain estimates and judgments and involves dealing with uncertainties in the application of complex tax laws. Our estimates of current and deferred tax assets and liabilities may change based, in part, on added certainty or finality to an anticipated outcome, changes in accounting standards or tax laws in the United States, or foreign jurisdictions where we operate, or changes in other facts or circumstances. In addition, we recognize liabilities for potential United States and foreign income tax contingencies based on our estimate of whether, and the extent to which, additional taxes may be due. If we determine that payment of these amounts is unnecessary or if the recorded tax liability is less than our current assessment, we may be required to recognize an income tax benefit or additional income tax expense in our financial statements, accordingly.
 
 As of January 31, 2010, we had a valuation allowance of $113.4 million related to state and certain foreign deferred tax assets that management determined are not likely to be realized due, in part, to projections of future taxable income and potential utilization limitations of tax attributes acquired as a result of stock ownership changes.  To the extent realization of the deferred tax assets becomes more-likely-than-not, we would recognize such deferred tax asset as an income tax benefit during the period the realization occurred.
 
42

         
   Our deferred tax assets do not include the excess tax benefit related to stock-based compensation that are a component of our federal and state net operating loss and research tax credit carryforwards in the amount of $401.5 million as of January 31, 2010. Consistent with prior years, the excess tax benefit reflected in our net operating loss and research tax credit carryforwards will be accounted for as a credit to stockholders’ equity, if and when realized.  In determining if and when excess tax benefits have been realized, we have elected to do a with-and-without approach with respect to such excess tax benefits. We have also elected to ignore the indirect tax effects of stock-based compensation deductions for financial and accounting reporting purposes, and specifically to recognize the full effect of the research tax credit in income from continuing operations.
 
We recognize the benefit from a tax position only if it is more-likely-than-not that the position would be sustained upon audit based solely on the technical merits of the tax position. Our policy is to include interest and penalties related to unrecognized tax benefits as a component of income tax expense. Please refer to Note 14 of these Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements in Part IV, Item 15 of this Form 10-K for additional information. 
 
Goodwill
 
  Our impairment review process compares the fair value of the reporting unit in which the goodwill resides to its carrying value.  We determined that our reporting units are equivalent to our operating segments, or components of an operating segment, for the purposes of completing our goodwill impairment test.  We utilize a two-step approach to testing goodwill for impairment. The first step tests for possible impairment by applying a fair value-based test. In computing fair value of our reporting units, we use estimates of future revenues, costs and cash flows from such units. The second step, if necessary, measures the amount of such impairment by applying fair value-based tests to individual assets and liabilities. Goodwill is subject to our annual impairment test during the fourth quarter of our fiscal year, or earlier if indicators of potential impairment exist, using a fair value-based approach.  

During the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2010, our market capitalization increased over 100% when compared to the same period in fiscal year 2009.  We completed our most recent annual impairment test during the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2010 and concluded that there was no impairment as the fair value of our reporting units exceeded their carrying value.  This assessment was based upon a discounted cash flow analysis, analysis of market comparables, where appropriate, and analysis of our market capitalization. Determining the number of reporting units and the fair value of a reporting unit requires us to make judgments and involves the use of significant estimates and assumptions. We also make judgments and assumptions in allocating assets and liabilities to each of our reporting units. We base our fair value estimates on assumptions we believe to be reasonable but that are unpredictable and inherently uncertain.  
 
Our estimates of cash flows were based upon, among other things, certain assumptions about expected future operating performance, such as revenue growth rates, operating margins, risk-adjusted discount rates, and future economic and market conditions. Our estimates of discounted cash flows may differ from actual cash flows due to, among other things, economic conditions, changes to our business model or changes in operating performance. Additionally, certain estimates of discounted cash flows involve businesses with limited financial history and developing revenue models, which increases the risk of differences between the projected and actual performance. The long-term financial forecasts that we utilize represent the best estimate that we have at this time and we believe that its underlying assumptions are reasonable. Significant differences between our estimates and actual cash flows could materially affect our future financial results, which could impact our future estimates of the fair value of some or all of our reporting units.  Determining the fair value of our reporting units also requires us to use judgment in the selection of appropriate market comparables, if there are any, and the amount of weight to ascribe to fair value measurements that are based on the market approach.

Any significant reductions in the actual amount of cash flows realized by our reporting units, reductions in the value of market comparables, or reductions in our market capitalization could impact future estimates of the fair value of our reporting units. Such events could ultimately result in a charge to our earnings in future periods due to the potential for a write-down of the goodwill associated with some or all of our reporting units.

43

   
    Cash Equivalents and Marketable Securities
          
    Cash equivalents consist of financial instruments which are readily convertible into cash and have original maturities of three months or less at the time of acquisition.  Marketable securities consist primarily of highly liquid investments with maturities of greater than three months when purchased.  We generally classify our marketable securities at the date of acquisition as available- for- sale.  These securities are reported at fair value with the related unrealized gains and losses included in accumulated other comprehensive income (loss), a component of stockholder’s equity, net of tax.  Any unrealized losses which are considered to be other-than-temporary impairments are recorded in the other income (expense) section of our consolidated statements of operations.  Realized gains (losses) on the sale of marketable securities are determined using the specific-identification method and recorded in the other income (expense) section of our consolidated statements of operations. Please refer to Note 18 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements in Part IV, Item 15 of this Form 10-K. We measure our cash equivalents and marketable securities at fair value. The fair values of our financial assets and liabilities are determined using quoted market prices of identical assets or quoted market prices of similar assets from active markets. Level 1 valuations are obtained from real-time quotes for transactions in active exchange markets involving identical assets. Level 2 valuations are obtained from quoted market prices in active markets involving similar assets. Level 3 valuations are based on unobservable inputs to the valuation methodology and include our own data about assumptions market participants would use in pricing the asset or liability based on the best information available under the circumstances. Each level of input has different levels of subjectivity and difficulty involved in determining fair value. While most of our cash equivalents and marketable securities are valued based on Level 2 inputs, the valuation of our holdings of the Reserve International Liquidity Fund, Ltd., or International Reserve Fund are classified as a Level 3 input due to the inherent subjectivity and the significant judgment involved in its valuation. Total financial assets at fair value classified within Level 3 were 0.4% of total assets on our Consolidated Balance Sheet as of January 31, 2010.

      All of our available-for-sale investments are subject to a periodic impairment review. We record a charge to earnings when a decline in fair value is significantly below cost basis and judged to be other-than-temporary, or have other indicators of impairments.  If the fair value of an available-for-sale debt instrument is less than its amortized cost basis, an other-than - temporary impairment is triggered in circumstances where (1) we intend to sell the instrument, (2) it is more likely than not that we will be required to sell the instrument before recovery of its amortized cost basis, or (3) a credit loss exists where we do not expect to recover the entire amortized cost basis of the instrument. If we intend to sell or it is more likely than not that we will be required to sell the available-for-sale debt instrument before recovery of its amortized cost basis, we recognize an other-than- temporary impairment in earnings equal to the entire difference between the debt instruments’ amortized cost basis and its fair value.  For available-for-sale debt instruments that are considered other-than-temporarily impaired due to the existence of a credit loss, if we do not intend to sell and it is more likely than not that we will be required to sell the instrument before recovery of its remaining amortized cost basis (amortized cost basis less any current-period credit loss), we separate the amount of the impairment into the amount that is credit related and the amount due to all other factors.  The credit loss component is recognized in earnings.
 
 Stock-based Compensation
 
 Our stock-based compensation cost is measured at grant date, based on the fair value of the awards, and is recognized as expense over the requisite employee service period.We recognize stock-based compensation expense using the straight-line attribution method.  We estimate the fair value of employee stock options on the date of grant using a binomial model and we use the closing trading price of our common stock on the date of grant as the fair value of awards of restricted stock units, or RSUs.  The determination of fair value of share-based payment awards on the date of grant using an option-pricing model is affected by our stock price as well as assumptions regarding a number of highly complex and subjective variables. These variables include, but are not limited to, the expected stock price volatility over the term of the awards, actual and projected employee stock option exercise behaviors, vesting schedules, death and disability probabilities, expected volatility and risk-free interest. Our management has determined that the use of implied volatility is expected to be more reflective of market conditions and, therefore, can reasonably be expected to be a better indicator of our expected volatility than historical volatility. The risk-free interest rate assumption is based upon observed interest rates appropriate for the term of our employee stock options. The dividend yield assumption is based on the history and expectation of dividend payouts. We began segregating options into groups for employees with relatively homogeneous exercise behavior in order to calculate the best estimate of fair value using the binomial valuation model.

Using the binomial model, we estimated the fair value of the stock options granted under our stock option plans using the following assumptions during the fiscal year ended January 31, 2010:
 
Weighted average expected life of stock options (in years)
   
3.7-5.8
 
Risk free interest rate
   
1.8% - 2.9
%
Volatility
   
45% - 72
%
Dividend yield
   
-
 
 
 
44

 
 
We used the Black-Scholes model to estimate the fair value of shares issued under our employee stock purchase plan during the fiscal year ended January 31, 2010, using the following assumptions:
 
Weighted average expected life of stock options (in years)
   
0.5-2.0
 
Risk free interest rate
   
0.2-1.0
%
Volatility
   
53%-73
%
Dividend yield
   
-
 
 
         Accounting standards also require forfeitures to be estimated at the time of grant and revised, if necessary, in subsequent periods if actual forfeitures differ from those estimates. Forfeitures were estimated based on our historical experience. If factors change and we employ different assumptions in the application of accounting standards in future periods, the compensation expense that we record under these accounting standards may differ significantly from what we have recorded in the current period.

Litigation, Investigation and Settlement Costs
 
 From time to time, we are involved in legal actions and/or investigations by regulatory bodies. We are aggressively defending our current litigation matters for which we are responsible. However, there are many uncertainties associated with any litigation or investigations, and we cannot be certain that these actions or other third-party claims against us will be resolved without costly litigation, fines and/or substantial settlement payments. If that occurs, our business, financial condition and results of operations could be materially and adversely affected. If information becomes available that causes us to determine that a loss in any of our pending litigation, investigations or settlements is probable, and we can reasonably estimate the loss associated with such events, we will record the loss in accordance with U.S.GAAP. However, the actual liability in any such litigation or investigations may be materially different from our estimates, which could require us to record additional costs.
 


 
45

 
 
 
 Results of Operations
 
The following table sets forth, for the periods indicated, certain items in our consolidated statements of operations expressed as a percentage of revenue. 
 
   
Year Ended
 
   
January 31, 2010
 
January 25, 2009
 
January 27, 2008
 
Revenue
   
100.0
%
100.0
 
100.0
%
Cost of revenue
   
64.6
 
65.7
 
54.4
 
Gross profit
   
35.4
 
34.3
 
45.6
 
Operating expenses:
               
Research and development
   
27.3
 
25.0
 
16.9
 
Sales, general and administrative
   
11.0
 
10.6
 
8.3
 
Restructuring charges and other
   
-
 
0.8
 
-
 
Total operating expenses
   
38.3
 
36.4
 
25.2
 
Income (loss) from operations
   
(2.9)
 
(2.1
20.4
 
Interest and other income, net
   
0.5
 
0.8
 
1.6
 
Income (loss) before income taxes
   
(2.4)
 
(1.3
22.0
 
Income tax expense (benefit)
   
(0.4)
 
(0.4
2.5
 
Net income (loss)
   
(2.0)
%
(0.9
)%
19.5
%

Fiscal Years Ended January 31, 2010, January 25, 2009 and January 27, 2008
 
Revenue
 
Fiscal Year 2010 vs. Fiscal Year 2009
 
         Revenue was $3.33 billion for the fiscal year 2010 and $3.42 billion for fiscal year 2009, a decrease of 3%.   A discussion of our revenue results for each of our operating segments is as follows:

GPU Business. GPU Business revenue decreased by 8% to $1.76 billion for fiscal year 2010 compared to $1.91 billion for fiscal year 2009.  The decrease was primarily the result of a decline in sales of notebook GPUs, offset by a slight increase in sales of memory products.  Sales of our notebook GPU products decreased by approximately 31% while sales of our desktop GPU products were essentially flat, increasing by only 1%, and our memory products increased by 38% as compared to fiscal year 2009.   The decrease in notebook GPU revenue was driven primarily by a combination of a decline in unit demand and a decline in average selling price (“ASPs”) as a result of increased competition in the marketplace and due to share losses we experienced within the notebook segment, during calendar year 2009 compared to calendar year 2008 as reported in the November PC Graphics 2009 Report from Mercury Research.  The very slight increase in sales of our desktop GPU products resulted from an increase in unit volume in fiscal year 2010, which was driven by a strong unit sales recovery during the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2010, offset by a decline in ASPs for the full fiscal year, which was driven by pricing pressures in the marketplace for our high-end and mainstream products. Sales of our memory products increased as a result of the overall increase in desktop GPU unit demand.

PSB. PSB revenue decreased by 26% to $510.2 million for the fiscal year 2010 as compared to $693.4 million for fiscal year 2009.  Both the ASPs and unit shipments of professional workstation products decreased, primarily due to the relatively slow recovery of corporate spending following the economic recession that began during fiscal year 2009.  

MCP Business. MCP Business revenue increased by 33% to $871.6 million for fiscal year 2010 as compared to $655.6 million for fiscal year 2009.  The increase was a result of increased sales of our Intel-based platform products by over 100%, offset by a decrease in sales of our AMD-based platform products by approximately 12%. The increase in Intel-based platform product sales was driven by sales of our ION products. The decrease in AMD-based platform products was driven by limited availability of low-end AMD CPUs in the marketplace during the last half of fiscal year 2010 as well as by AMD continuing to market their own chipset product lines in place of ours.

CPB.  CPB revenue increased by 20% to $163.9 million for fiscal year 2010 as compared to $136.3 million for fiscal year 2009.  This increase in CPB revenue was primarily driven by sales growth from our embedded products for the automotive and entertainment markets, and was partially offset by a decrease in revenue from development arrangements and royalties from game console-related products in the comparative periods.
 
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 Fiscal Year 2009 vs. Fiscal Year 2008
 
Revenue was $3.42 billion for fiscal year 2009, compared to $4.10 billion for fiscal year 2008, which represents a decrease of 16%.   A discussion of our revenue results for each of our operating segments is as follows:

GPU Business.  GPU business revenue decreased by 24% to $1.91 billion for fiscal year 2009, compared to $2.52 billion for fiscal year 2008. This decrease resulted from decreased sales of our desktop GPU and memory products, offset by increased sales of our notebook GPU products. Sales of our desktop GPU and memory products decreased by approximately 29% and 59%, respectively, in fiscal year 2009 when compared to fiscal year 2008.  These decreases were primarily due to a decline in the Standalone Desktop market segment as reported in the December 2008 PC Graphics Report from Mercury Research, driven by a combination of market migration from desktop PCs towards notebook PCs and an overall market shift in the mix of products towards lower priced products. This overall market decline translated into a decline of over 20% in the number of units of desktop GPU products that we sold in fiscal year 2009 compared to fiscal year 2008. The decline in desktop GPU revenue also reflects the impact of a slight average sales price regression in our products and a decline in our share position during the middle portion of fiscal year 2009 as a result of increased competition. Memory sales declined as a result of a decline in sales of our high-end desktop GPU products. Sales of our notebook GPU products increased approximately 3% in fiscal year 2009 when compared to fiscal year 2008, due to higher unit sales aided by a market move toward notebook PCs over desktop PCs, offset by a slight decline in average selling prices.  Additionally, the overall global economic recessionary climate contributed to a significant decline in the demand for total graphics during the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2009.

PSB. PSB revenue increased by 18% to $693.4 million for fiscal year 2009, compared to $588.4 million for fiscal year 2008. Our NVIDIA professional workstation product sales increased due to an overall unit increase of approximately 15% in shipments of boards and chips as compared to fiscal year 2008, due to strong demand and our transition from previous generations of NVIDIA Quadro professional workstation products to GeForce 8-based and GeForce 9-based products. Sales of NVIDIA Quadro CX for Adobe’s CS4 software, which we launched in the third quarter of fiscal year 2009, also contributed towards the increase in sales in fiscal year 2009.
 
MCP Business. MCP business revenue decreased by 8% to $655.6 million for fiscal year 2009, compared to $710.4 million for fiscal year 2008. This decrease was due to a decline of approximately 32% in sales of our AMD-based platform products resulting from increased competition in AMD-based products, offset by an increase of approximately 120% in sales of our Intel-based platform products. The increase in Intel-based product sales was driven by sales of our GeForce 9400M mGPU, which we launched in October 2008 along with Apple Inc., or Apple, for their new lineup of Mac notebooks, and our new GeForce 9400 and 9300 mGPUs for Intel desktop PCs.  
 
CPB. CPB revenue decreased by 46% to $136.3 million for fiscal year 2009, compared to $251.1 million for fiscal year 2008. The decline in CPB revenue is primarily driven by a combination of a decrease in revenue from our cell phone products and a decrease in revenue from Sony Computer Entertainment, or SCE. The decrease in revenue from our cell phone products resulted from our shift from marketing and developing legacy products to achieving design wins and marketing our newer Tegra products.  The decrease in our revenue from SCE resulted from a decline in license revenue and a decline in royalty revenue that was caused by a lower number of units shipped as well as by a step-down in the per unit royalty rate during the year due to achievement of a unit-based milestone in our agreement with SCE.

Concentration of Revenue
 
        We generated 84%, 87% and 89% of our total revenue for fiscal years 2010, 2009 and 2008, respectively, from sales to customers outside the United States and other Americas. Revenue by geographic region is allocated to individual countries based on the location to which the products are initially billed even if the foreign contract equipment manufacturers, or CEMs’, add-in board and motherboard manufacturers’ revenue is attributable to end customers in a different location.

 Revenue from significant customers, those representing 10% or more of total revenue for the respective dates, is summarized as follows:
 
   
Year Ended
 
   
January 31,
2010
 
January 25,
2009
 
January 27,
2008
 
Revenue:
             
Customer A
   
12
%
7
%
5
%
Customer B
   
9
%
8
%
10
%
Customer C
   
7
%
11
%
7
%
 
 
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   Gross Profit and Gross Margin
 
  Gross profit consists of total revenue, net of allowances, less cost of revenue. Cost of revenue consists primarily of the cost of semiconductors purchased from subcontractors, including wafer fabrication, assembly, testing and packaging, manufacturing support costs, including labor and overhead associated with such purchases, final test yield fallout, inventory and warranty provisions and shipping costs. Cost of revenue also includes development costs for license, service arrangements and stock-based compensation related to personnel associated with manufacturing.
 
 Gross margin is the percentage of gross profit to revenue.  Our gross margin was 35.4%, 34.3% and 45.6% for fiscal years 2010, 2009 and 2008, respectively.  Our gross margin is significantly impacted by the mix of products we sell and can vary in any period depending on that product mix.

Our strategy for improving our gross margin relies upon delivering competitive product offerings that allow us to maintain our market leadership position and expand our addressable markets, lowering our product costs by introducing product architectures that take advantage of smaller process geometries and improving our product mix.  We expect gross margin to be in the range of 44% to 45% during the first quarter of fiscal year 2011.

A discussion of our gross margin results for each of our operating segments is as follows:
 
 Fiscal Year 2010 vs. Fiscal Year 2009

Our gross margin increased to 35.4% in fiscal year 2010 from 34.3% for fiscal year 2009.  The improvement in gross margin was driven primarily by improved yields of our 55nm products, transition to 40nm products, as well as other manufacturing cost reductions, and more favorable product mix, particularly with increased sales of higher margin MCP products.  Furthermore, during the first quarter of fiscal year 2010 our gross margin benefited from the sell-through of inventory that had previously been written down in the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2009.  This did not have a significant impact on our gross margin for the remaining quarters in fiscal year 2010.  Offsetting these improvements, we recorded a charge to cost of revenue, net of insurance reimbursement in the amount of $95.9 million in fiscal year 2010 compared to $189.3 million in fiscal year 2009 related to weak die/packing material set that was used in certain versions of our previous generation chips.

GPU Business. The gross margin of our GPU Business decreased during fiscal year 2010 as compared to fiscal year 2009.  This decline resulted from lower ASPs in our mainstream desktop GPU products as well as in our notebook GPU products that we believe were driven by pricing pressures in the marketplace over the comparable period. These factors were further exacerbated in the first quarter of fiscal year 2010 as a result of losses we incurred selling certain older, transitioning products.  These decreases in gross margins were offset by improving yields of our 55nm products, a transition to 40nm products, and other manufacturing cost reductions achieved during fiscal year 2010, plus a net benefit arising from the sell-through of inventory during primarily the first half of fiscal year 2010 that had previously been written down in the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2009.

PSB. The gross margin of our PSB decreased during fiscal year 2010 as compared to fiscal year 2009.  This decrease was primarily due to a decline in ASPs caused primarily by pricing pressure resulting from the relatively slow recovery of corporate spending during fiscal year 2010 following the economic recession that began during fiscal year 2009 .

MCP Business. The gross margin of our MCP Business increased during fiscal year 2010 as compared to fiscal year 2009.   This increase was primarily driven by a shift in product mix toward higher margin Intel-based and AMD-based platform products and a reduction in the warranty charge arising from a weak die/packaging material set in certain versions of our previous generation products.  In addition, we recorded greater benefits to cost of revenue for insurance reimbursements received during the comparable periods.

CPB.  The gross margin of our CPB decreased during fiscal year 2010 as compared to fiscal year 2009. This decrease was a result of declining revenue from higher margin products and services, including development arrangements and royalties from game console-related products, in the comparative periods.

 
48

 
   Fiscal Year 2009 vs. Fiscal Year 2008

 Our gross margin declined to 34.3% in fiscal year 2009 from 45.6% for fiscal year 2008. The gross margin for fiscal year 2009 includes the impact of a $196.0 million charge against cost of revenue to cover anticipated customer warranty, repair, return, replacement and associated costs arising from a weak die/packaging material set in certain versions of our previous generation MCP and GPU products used in notebook systems offset by allocated insurance claim proceeds of $6.7 million from an insurance provider. This warranty charge had an adverse impact of approximately 6.0% on our gross margin for fiscal year 2009. We also incurred a charge of $4.5 million related to a royalty dispute during fiscal year 2009.  Additionally, inventory reserves taken during fiscal year 2009 were approximately $50.0 million higher compared to fiscal year 2008, reflecting a significant decline in our forecasted future demand for the related products and having a negative impact on our gross margin.

GPU Business. The gross margin of our GPU business decreased during fiscal year 2009 as compared to fiscal year 2008.  This decrease was due to a charge against cost of revenue to cover anticipated customer warranty, repair, return, replacement and associated costs arising from a weak die/packaging material set in certain versions of our previous generation GPU products used in notebook systems, the negative impact of inventory reserves taken during the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2009, and average sales price regression in our GeForce 9-based and previous generations of desktop products resulting from increased competition. The average sales price regression was also driven by a combination of market migration from desktop PCs towards notebook PCs and an overall market shift in the mix of products towards lower priced products.

PSB. The gross margin of our PSB increased slightly during fiscal year 2009 as compared to fiscal year 2008.  This increase was primarily due to increased sales of our GeForce 9-based NVIDIA Quadro products, which began selling in the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2008, and GeForce 8-based NVIDIA Quadro products, which generally have higher gross margins than our previous generations of NVIDIA Quadro products.

MCP Business. The gross margin of our MCP business decreased during fiscal year 2009 as compared to fiscal year 2008, due to a decline in the margins of our AMD and Intel-based products. During fiscal year 2009, gross margins declined primarily due to a charge against cost of revenue to cover anticipated customer warranty, repair, return, replacement and associated costs arising from a weak die/packaging material set in certain versions of our previous generation MCP products used in notebook systems.

CPB. The gross margin of our CPB increased during fiscal year 2009 as compared to fiscal year 2008.  This increase was primarily due to changes in the product mix in our CPB product lines.  We experienced greater revenue decline in our lower margin cell phone and other handheld devices product lines as compared to higher margin SCE transactions in the current year.

Operating Expenses
 
   
Year Ended
   
Year Ended
 
   
January 31, 2010
 
January 25,
2009
   
$
Change
 
%
Change
   
January 25,
2009
   
January 27,
2008
   
$
Change
 
%
Change
 
   
(In millions)
   
(In millions)
 
Research and development expenses
 
$
908.9
 
$
855.9
   
$
53.0
   
6
%
 
$
855.9
   
$
691.6
   
$
164.3
   
24
%
Sales, general and administrative expenses
   
367.0
   
362.2
     
4.8
   
1
%
   
362.2
     
341.3
     
20.9
   
6
%
Restructuring charges and other
   
-
   
26.9
     
(26.9
 
(100
%
 
26.9
     
-
     
26.9
   
100
      Total operating expenses
 
$
1,275.9
 
$
1,245.0
   
$
30.9
   
2.5
%
 
$
1,245.0
   
$
1,032.9
   
$
212.1
   
21
%
Research and development as a percentage of net revenue
   
27%
   
25
%
                 
25
%
   
17
%
             
Sales, general and administrative as a percentage of net revenue
   
11%
   
11
%
                 
11
%
   
8
%
             
 
 
49

 
    Research and Development

    Fiscal Year 2010 vs. Fiscal Year 2009

Research and development expenses increased by $53.0 million, or 6%.  The majority of the increase was caused by stock-based compensation charges recorded during fiscal year 2010 of $90.5 million related to a tender offer that closed in March 2009, offset by a reduction in ongoing stock-based compensation expense of $36.7 million resulting from the cancellation of stock options pursuant to the tender offer. Compensation and benefits related to research and development increased by $11.9 million due to additional new hires and depreciation and amortization expense increased by $4.2 million due to property and equipment purchases. Additionally, our cost reduction initiatives across several discretionary spending areas resulted in decreased expenses related to computer software and equipment of $7.7 million, travel and entertainment of $5.4 million, employee related expenses of $3.5 million, and development expenses of $2.8 million.
 
    Fiscal Year 2009 vs. Fiscal Year 2008

    Research and development expenses increased by $164.3 million, or 24%. The increase was primarily due to increase in salaries and benefits by approximately $64.9 million primarily as a result of the net addition of approximately 500 personnel in departments related to research and development functions, offset by lower expenses during fiscal year 2009 related to our variable compensation programs when compared to fiscal year 2008. Stock-based compensation expense increased by $21.4 million primarily because of the impact of new hire and semi-annual stock awards granted subsequent to the third quarter of fiscal year 2008, offset by a reduction in expense related to older stock awards that were almost fully vested and for which the related expense had been almost fully amortized by the end of the first quarter of fiscal year 2009.  Development expenses increased by $18.8 million primarily due to increase in expenses related to engineering services, prototype materials and internal board requests.  Other increases in research and development expenses are primarily related to costs that were driven by personnel growth, including depreciation and amortization, facilities, and computer software and equipment. 
 
   Sales, General and Administrative

    Fiscal Year 2010 vs. Fiscal Year 2009

  Sales, general and administrative expenses increased by $4.8 million, or 1%. The majority of the increase was caused by stock-based compensation charges recorded during fiscal year 2010 of $38.3 million related to a tender offer that closed in March 2009, offset by a reduction in ongoing stock-based compensation expense of $19.1 million resulting from the cancellation of stock options pursuant to the tender offer. The increase was also driven by an increase in compensation and benefits by $8.4 million due to additional new hires and professional fees by $11.3 million due to legal service charges. Offsetting these increases, our cost reduction initiatives across several discretionary spending areas resulted in decreased expenses related to advertising and promotions of $9.3 million, employee related expenses of $8.0 million, contract labor of $6.6 million, computer software and equipment of $6.5 million, and marketing of $5.4 million.  

    Fiscal Year 2009 vs. Fiscal Year 2008

   Sales, general and administrative expenses increased by $20.9 million, or 6%.   Outside professional fees increased by $17.5 million primarily due to increased legal fees pertaining to ongoing litigation matters described in Note 13 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements in Part IV, Item 15 of this Form 10-K. Marketing and advertising expenses increased by $22.3 million, primarily due to increased advertising campaign related activities and trade shows in the current year. Depreciation and amortization expense increased by $15.4 million primarily due to amortization of intangible assets acquired from our acquisitions of Mental Images and Ageia, Technologies, Inc., and from increased capital expenditures. Stock-based compensation expense increased by $6.9 million primari