Following the huge loss reported by major mobile partner Nokia, Microsoft posted its fiscal third-quarter results on Thursday following the close of the market. Wall Street was expecting the software giant’s earnings to slide 7% year-over-year to $0.57 per share on sales of $17.18 billion, up 5% from the same quarter in 2011. Microsoft reported earnings of $0.60 per share, beating estimates, and revenue came in at $17.41 billion. Operating income totaled $6.37 billion, up 12% year-over-year. Read on for more.
“We’re driving toward exciting launches across the entire company, while delivering strong financial results,” Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said. “With the upcoming release of new Windows 8 PCs and tablets, the next version of Office, and a wide array of products and services for the enterprise and consumers, we will be delivering exceptional value to all our customers in the year ahead.”
Revenue from Microsoft’s Server & Tools division was up 14% to $4.57 billion, Microsoft’s Business division grew 9% to $5.81 billion in sales, and its Windows and Windows Live division posted revenue of $4.62 billion, up 4%.
Microsoft did not discuss specific figures with regard to Windows Phone license sales but Nokia, the only Windows Phone vendor partner that has shared sales figures for this past quarter, reported having sold more than 2 million Lumia smartphones between January and March. Microsoft’s full press release follows below.
Microsoft Reports Record Third-Quarter Revenue
Strong business demand drives double-digit operating income growth.
REDMOND, Wash. — Apr. 19, 2012 — Microsoft Corp. today announced quarterly revenue of $17.41 billion for the quarter ended Mar. 31, 2012, a 6% increase from the prior year period. Operating income was $6.37 billion, up 12% from the prior year period.
Net income and diluted earnings per share for the quarter were $5.11 billion and $0.60 per share, compared with $5.23 billion and $0.61 per share, respectively, in the prior year period. Prior year net income and diluted earnings per share included a $461 million or $0.05 per share tax benefit primarily related to a tax settlement with the U.S. Internal Revenue Service.
“We’re driving toward exciting launches across the entire company, while delivering strong financial results,” said Steve Ballmer, chief executive officer at Microsoft. “With the upcoming release of new Windows 8 PCs and tablets, the next version of Office, and a wide array of products and services for the enterprise and consumers, we will be delivering exceptional value to all our customers in the year ahead.”
The Server & Tools business posted $4.57 billion in third-quarter revenue, a 14% increase from the prior year period, driven by double-digit revenue growth in SQL Server and more than 20% growth in System Center revenue.
The Microsoft Business Division reported $5.81 billion in third-quarter revenue, a 9% increase from the prior year period, reflecting the continued strength of Office 2010 with businesses and consumers. Dynamics posted an 11% revenue increase from the prior year period, with Dynamics CRM revenue growing more than 30%.
The Windows and Windows Live Division posted revenue of $4.62 billion, a 4% increase from the prior year period. Strong Windows 7 adoption continued with enterprise desktops on Windows 7 now up to 40% worldwide.
“We saw strong demand for our business desktop and infrastructure offerings,” said Peter Klein, chief financial officer at Microsoft. “Solid revenue growth and continued cost discipline drove double-digit operating income growth.”
The Online Services Division reported revenue of $707 million, a 6% increase from the prior year period, and operating loss improvement of approximately $300 million.
The Entertainment & Devices Division posted revenue of $1.62 billion, a decrease of 16% from the prior period due to a soft gaming console market. Xbox remained the top-selling console in the U.S. for the 15th consecutive month, and the company announced new television content partners and experiences for its 40 million Xbox LIVE members.
“We continue to execute well across our businesses, and we are seeing robust demand for our enterprise products and services,” said Kevin Turner, chief operating officer at Microsoft. “Our investments and offerings in the database platform and public, private, and hybrid cloud are helping our customers transform their operations to meet today’s evolving business demands.”
Microsoft is revising operating expense guidance downward and now offers a range of $28.3 billion to $28.7 billion for the full year ending June 30, 2012. Microsoft also offers preliminary fiscal year 2013 operating expense guidance of $30.3 billion to $30.9 billion, representing 6% to 8% growth from the mid-point of fiscal year 2012 guidance.