Microsoft’s quarterly earnings and revenue beat Wall Street estimates, thanks to robust growth in its cloud business and demand for generative AI capabilities.
Revenue in the company’s Intelligent Cloud segment, which includes the Azure cloud computing platform, increased by 8% year on year to $24 billion. Azure sales increased by 26%, above market estimates. CEO Satya Nadella revealed that the Microsoft Cloud “surpassed $110 billion in annual revenue, up 27 percent in constant currency, with Azure all-up accounting for more than 50 percent of the total for the first time.”
Microsoft fell roughly 4% after posting slower-than-expected revenue growth in its cloud division during its fiscal fourth quarter and issuing lower-than-expected projections. Microsoft then exceeded Wall Street’s expectations, reporting earnings of $2.69 per share on $56.19 billion in revenue. Refinitiv surveyed analysts predicted earnings per share of $2.55 on revenue of $55.47 billion.
Microsoft has been investing heavily in AI, and the company’s generative AI features are gaining traction with businesses. For example, Microsoft’s “Copilot” AI tool can help users write code more quickly and accurately. In a statement, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said that organizations are eager to adopt AI to address their biggest challenges. “We are seeing strong demand for our AI-powered products and services,” Nadella said.
In addition, AI was mentioned 175 times during Microsoft’s conference call on Q4 financial results, indicating continued hype in an already marketing-heavy industry. Nadella couldn’t resist promoting AI’s potential, stating that customers are eager to apply next-generation AI quickly and responsibly to tackle challenges and opportunities. This led to the relentless discussion about AI.
The sources for this piece include articles in Axios and TheRegister.