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Apple reports Q1 results: $13.1 billion profit beats estimates, iPhone sales and Q2 guidance miss big

Updated Jan 23rd, 2013 5:08PM EST
Apple Earnings Q1 2013

After two consecutive misses to wrap up fiscal 2012 and an unprecedented dive in the company’s share price, all eyes were on the future as Apple (AAPL) reported its first-quarter results for fiscal 2013. Analysts’ expectations have fallen over the past few weeks as investor sentiment soured, but consensus estimates of $13.34 in profit per share on $54.58 billion in sales would still give Apple the second most profitable quarter of all time among tech companies. The results are now in, and Apple beat estimates with earnings of $13.81 per share on $54.51 billion in revenue. Apple’s 13.1 billion FQ1 profit represents the most profitable quarter in tech company history, narrowly edging out its own $13.06 billion record set in the same quarter last year.

After second-quarter guidance, iPhone shipments and margins were the biggest items on industry watchers’ minds. Wall Street’s consensus called for shipments to fall in the 50 million-unit range and Apple missed estimates, having shipped 47.8 million iPhones in the holiday quarter. Apple’s gross margin for the first quarter was in line with estimates at 38.6%.

iPad shipments in the first quarter climbed to 22.9 million units versus analysts’ 23 million-unit estimate, and iPod shipments came in at 12.7 million units. Mac shipments fell to 4.1 million units from 4.89 million in the same quarter last year.

For the March quarter, Wall Street was looking for revenue guidance of $46.73 billion and Apple’s guidance of $41 billion to $43 billion missed estimates by a wide margin. Apple was trading down sharply after hours on Wednesday following its earnings report.

Apple’s press release follows below.

Apple Reports Record Results

47.8 Million iPhones Sold; 22.9 Million iPads Sold

CUPERTINO, California—January 23, 2013—Apple® today announced financial results for its 13-week fiscal 2013 first quarter ended December 29, 2012. The Company posted record quarterly revenue of $54.5 billion and record quarterly net profit of $13.1 billion, or $13.81 per diluted share. These results compare to revenue of $46.3 billion and net profit of $13.1 billion, or $13.87 per diluted share, in the 14-week year-ago quarter. Gross margin was 38.6 percent compared to 44.7 percent in the year-ago quarter. International sales accounted for 61 percent of the quarter’s revenue.

Average weekly revenue was $4.2 billion in the quarter compared to $3.3 billion in the year-ago quarter.

The Company sold a record 47.8 million iPhones in the quarter, compared to 37 million in the year-ago quarter. Apple also sold a record 22.9 million iPads during the quarter, compared to 15.4 million in the year-ago quarter. The Company sold 4.1 million Macs, compared to 5.2 million in the year-ago quarter. Apple sold 12.7 million iPods in the quarter, compared to 15.4 million in the year-ago quarter.

Apple’s Board of Directors has declared a cash dividend of $2.65 per share of the Company’s common stock. The dividend is payable on February 14, 2013, to shareholders of record as of the close of business on February 11, 2013.

“We’re thrilled with record revenue of over $54 billion and sales of over 75 million iOS devices in a single quarter,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “We’re very confident in our product pipeline as we continue to focus on innovation and making the best products in the world.”

“We’re pleased to have generated over $23 billion in cash flow from operations during the quarter,” said Peter Oppenheimer, Apple’s CFO. “We established new all-time quarterly records for iPhone and iPad sales, significantly broadened our ecosystem, and generated Apple’s highest quarterly revenue ever.”

Apple is providing the following guidance for its fiscal 2013 second quarter:


revenue between $41 billion and $43 billion


gross margin between 37.5 percent and 38.5 percent


operating expenses between $3.8 billion and $3.9 billion


other income/(expense) of $350 million


tax rate of 26%

Zach Epstein
Zach Epstein Executive Editor

Zach Epstein has been the Executive Editor at BGR for more than 10 years. He manages BGR’s editorial team and ensures that best practices are adhered to. He also oversees the Ecommerce team and directs the daily flow of all content. Zach first joined BGR in 2007 as a Staff Writer covering business, technology, and entertainment.

His work has been quoted by countless top news organizations, and he was recently named one of the world's top 10 “power mobile influencers” by Forbes. Prior to BGR, Zach worked as an executive in marketing and business development with two private telcos.