Nvidia Accused of Falsely Declaring $1b of Gaming GPU Sales
Mike Sanders / 5 months ago
It’s been nearly 3 years now since the cryptocurrency mining craze hit its peak and, quite frankly, they were pretty dark times if you were a humble gamer looking for a brand new graphics card. Put simply, market demand saw prices spike rather absurdly, and, to put this into context, an AMD RX 480 I’d purchased only the year before for £200 was now worth more 2nd-hand!
Now, this was, of course, all great news for both AMD and Nvidia who were selling graphics cards left, right, and center. In a report via TechSpot, however, it seems that Team Green is facing legal action over how it reported their GPU sales. Specifically, because a number of investors believe that Nvidia had deliberately misrepresented the numbers!
Nvidia Accused of ‘Masking’ Mining Sales
In the report, investors are alleging that Nvidia deliberately chose to declare around 1 billion dollars worth of GPU sales as being specifically sold to gaming consumers whereas, in reality, it is (again alleged) that they were instead sold to cryptocurrency miners.
Why is this important I hear you ask? Well, if true, from an investment standpoint you could argue that this tactical choice of revenue allocation could be misleading in terms of just how well the company was really doing at the time in terms of its general ‘gaming’ consumers. In other words, Nvidia has been accused of attempting to make ‘gaming’ sales appear a lot stronger whereas, in reality, it was really the mining craze that was boosting the numbers!
In the lawsuit which has been issued, it cites:
“In early 2017, Nvidia faced an unusual problem: its flagship product was flying off the shelves. Under normal circumstances, such a trend would be cheered.
“But the enormous sales growth owed not to an increase in demand from gamers (Nvidia’s traditional consumer), but rather to bands of online prospectors who were buying up the processors by the thousands and deploying them in massive datacenters to solve complex mathematical problems in pursuit of digital tokens.
“Launching the crypto SKU and reporting its sales in the OEM segment thus allowed defendants to claim that any mining-related revenues were cordoned off in OEM, creating the impression that Nvidia’s crown jewel gaming business was insulated from crypto-related volatility (and the crash in demand that would follow the cryptocurrency markets’ inevitable bust).”
What Do We Think?
The accusation really boils down to the fact that these investors believe Nvidia attempted to ‘fudge the numbers’ to hide the fact that they were only doing so well at the time because a significant quantity (if not a majority) of their graphics cards sales were all being primarily driven by the cryptocurrency boom. It is, therefore, alleged that Nvidia knew this and, to try and keep things positive, attempted to ‘cover-up’ the dominance of this GPU sale market by claiming them as coming from general gaming consumers.
Put simply, it’s a very messy accusation and while we doubt it will have any major consequences, we suspect that Nvidia may potentially have to make a few uncomfortable admissions if this does go further down the line!
What do you think? – Let us know in the comments!