Microsoft Reports Solid Earnings

    January 26, 2006

Well, I guess I should be glad I didn’t leave Seattle before the Microsoft earnings report, otherwise having to post about it a day later.

Microsoft posted solid earnings of $3.65 billion on revenues of $11.8 billion, up 5 and 9 percent (respectively) from $3.46 billion and $10.8 billion (respectively) a year ago. This represents a gain of 34 cents per share, beating analysts expectations by a penny.

Microsoft reports that it sold 1.5 million Xbox 360 consoles during the November 22-December 31 period, less than they wanted because of supply, but more than naysayers assumed.

For the Xbox 360, DiValerio said that Microsoft sold 900,000 units in North America, 500,000 units in Europe, and 100,000 in Japan. Overall, the company sold four games and three accessories for every console. The Xbox division lost $293 million in the quarter, versus a profit of $55 million a year earlier.

MSN lost more than half its earnings, although that does not reflect on the efforts on search and Windows Live.

Microsoft’s MSN online division also saw earnings fall to $58 million, from $130 million in the same quarter last year. Liddell attributed the drop to a significant decline in its business of offering narrowband Internet connections, which is being supplanted by increased popularity in faster broadband offerings.

Microsoft expects revenues on the year to be roughly $44-45 billion.

The software maker raised its earnings guidance slightly for the fiscal year ending June 30. The company said it now expects to earn between $1.28 and $1.31 per share, up from previous guidance of between $1.26 and $1.30 per share.

Revenue for the full fiscal year is now expected to be between $44 billion and $44.5 billion, up from previous guidance of between $43.7 billion and $44.5 billion.

Nathan Weinberg writes the popular InsideGoogle blog, offering the latest news and insights about Google and search engines.

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