Despite recent problems, Microsoft remains a safe bet
The group founded by Bill Gates, Microsoft has seen its revenues and profits climb as much as the market expected at the beginning of the year, mainly thanks to the ever-increasing demand for cloud (remote computing) and despite inflation and supply chain problems.
Microsoft announced on Tuesday, April 26 a revenue of 49.4 billion USD for the third quarter of its fiscal year, up 18% year-on-year. Its net profit amounted to 16.7 billion (+8%).
Although many businesses have resumed in person, habits developed during the pandemic, such as telecommuting and online shopping, seem to have been adopted in the long term, which benefits the tech giants. Revenues from Azure, Microsoft’s remote computing platform, jumped 46% year-over-year, as in the previous quarter.
Microsoft controls almost a quarter of the market share, it is the second-largest provider of cloud services in the world, behind Amazon’s AWS (33%) and ahead of Google Cloud (9%), according to figures from research firm Canalys for the end of 2021. On Wall Street, Microsoft was taking nearly 5% in after-hours trading.
John Freeman, an analyst at CFRA Research, also noted the 11% growth in sales of the Surface product line (personal computing): “it’s impressive and it’s positive for the technology supply chain, even if we’re not out of the woods yet,” he said.
From computers to cars, many industries are suffering from shortages of electronic components and supply chain difficulties related to high demand and factory closures caused by the health crisis, especially in China.
“Most surprising is the 34% growth in LinkedIn revenue,” John Freeman also noted: the professional social network “continues to be a small success story for Microsoft. This acquisition is looking better quarter after quarter.
The Xbox, the video activity of Microsoft, has seen its turnover increase by only 4%, a weak result compared to other branches of the group in Redmond (northwestern United States).
2022 will be a year of investment for Microsoft because the Microsoft group announced, at the end of January 2022, its plan to buy Activision Blizzard Studios (Call of Duty, Candy Crush) for USD 69 billion, potentially the largest merger and acquisition operation to ever take place in tech. The company has its sights set on the metaverse, those parallel universes were human, and augmented and virtual realities are to merge, via screens, augmented reality (AR) glasses and virtual reality headsets.