Strong sales of Xbox devices, SQL Server software and CRM software delivered full year revenues of US$44.2bn for software giant Microsoft, up 11pc year over year. The strong sales yielded profits of US$16.4bn, up 13pc compared with last year.
Last night Microsoft reported fourth quarter revenues of US$11.8bn, up 16pc on the year, yielding a profit of US$3.8bn, which was up 30pc on the year.
The board of directors of Microsoft has authorised new share purchase programmes consisting of a US$20bn tender offer to be completed in August and an additional US$20m ongoing share repurchase programme that will expire in 2011.
Microsoft returned more than US$5bn to shareholders in the form of dividends and share repurchases during the fourth quarter and returned over US$23bn to shareholders in the fiscal year.
“We delivered a very strong finish to the fiscal year highlighted by customer demand for our recently launched products of Xbox 360, SQL Server 2005, Visual Studio 2005 and Microsoft Dynamics CRM 3.0, which fuelled a combined 31pc revenue growth of their business groups for the quarter,” said Chris Liddell, chief financial officer of Microsoft.
“Our upcoming launches of Windows Vista, Microsoft Office 2007, Exchange Server 2007 and other key products position us to continue to deliver strong revenue growth in fiscal year 2007. We are also very pleased that both the Microsoft Business Solutions and the Mobile and Embedded Devices businesses achieved profitability for the full fiscal year.”
Microsoft chief operating officer Kevin Turner said the company was also seeing strong momentum in multi-year licensing growth driven by excitement over new product launches.
In looking ahead to the next quarter ended in September, the first quarter of fiscal year 2007, revenue is expected to be in the range of US$10.6bn to US$10.8bn and profits are expected to come in between US$4bn and US$4.2bn. For the full year 2007 Microsoft expects revenues to reach up to US$50.7bn and profits of US$19.4bn.
By John Kennedy