Tuesday, 20 February, 2018

Microsoft's Cloud Continues to Develop as It Chases Amazon

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella at Build 2017 in Seattle Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella at Build 2017 in Seattle
| 02 February, 2018, 00:49

This includes a 98% growth (98% CC) in Azure revenue, with Azure premium services growing by triple digits for the 14th quarter in a row.

The company beat analysts' expectations for the second quarter, posting revenue of US$28.9 billion, a 12 per cent increase over the same period past year, and adjusted earnings per share - not including the tax charge - of US96 cents.

On the Microsoft blog, the company once again spoke of the importance of developing its cloud offerings, and listed a number of major case studies and success stories for Azure and Dynamics 365, such as communications and advertising firm Publicis Groupe, which is building an AI-powered platform on Azure.

This equated to an operating income of $8.7bn, up 10% from the previous quarter, driven by increases across Microsoft's portfolio.

Microsoft reported 28.9 billion dollars (£20.4 billion) in revenue for the past three months. Search ad revenue excluding TAC increased 15% due to higher revenue per search and search volume.

The main stagnant spot remains the company's Surface computers, whose sales grew just 1% in the past quarter.


Leading the way in the quarter was Microsoft's productivity and business processes segment, which includes Microsoft Office, the Office 365 cloud suite and LinkedIn. This was the 10th consecutive quarter of 90%+ revenue growth for Azure.

Microsoft stock fell by more than 2 percent after the company reported better-than-expected earnings for the second quarter of its 2018 fiscal year - which ended on December 31 - after the bell on Wednesday. Non-Pro revenue declined by 5% (5% CC), and Windows commercial products and cloud services declined by 4% (5% CC).

Microsoft also saw strong hardware growth thanks to the November launch of its game console. "I do, in general, expect our strong performance in Azure to continue", chief financial officer Amy Hood said in an interview.

CEO Satya Nadella highlighted Microsoft's investment in IoT, AI and cloud as key to the growth.

Finally, the More Personal Computing segment, which encompasses Windows, Surface, Xbox, and other products, grew 2% from the year-ago period.

"This quarter's results speak to the differentiated value we are delivering to customers across our productivity solutions and as the hybrid cloud provider of choice", Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, said in a statement.

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