updated 08:40 am EST, Fri January 25, 2008
Microsoft Q407 Results
Microsoft enjoyed its best-ever holiday quarter last year, the company reports. The software developer says it earned $16.4 billion in revenue, or about $2 billion more than any other such quarter in the past; earnings of 50 cents per share also represented almost double what the company has achieved in the past, according to the results. The growth is credited primarily to Microsoft's core Client and Business divisions, which are responsible for Windows and Office respectively. Although sales of 100 million copies of Vista are considered disappointing in relation to XP, the new software helped the division grow by an average 20 percent. The company has 'hit its stride' with Windows customers in this period, says Microsoft Platforms and Services head Kevin Johnson.
The Redmond, Washington-based company was also helped by a dramatic turnaround for its Entertainment and Devices branch, which addresses both the Xbox 360 game system and the Zune line of media players. Microsoft switched from a $302 million loss for the same period in 2006 to a $357 million profit chiefly due to the launch of Halo 3 spurring console sales as well as less expensive manufacturing for the systems. Microsoft did not discuss the health of its Zune business but notes that the result is the first time the Entertainment division has turned a profit in the same timeframe.
Forecasts are also said to be aggressive for the winter quarter, which should see revenues between $14.3 and $14.6 billion and will reflect a relatively mild drop from the surge in holiday-related sales.