Microsoft Breaks the $50 Billion Mark

Microsoft finally broke the $50 billion barrier for revenues in fiscal 2007 – and the company’s financial team is predicting more of the same in the current fiscal year.

For the year, which ended January 30, the company brought in $51.12 billion, up 15 percent from last year’s $44.28 billion. For the fiscal fourth quarter, Microsoft chalked up $13.37 billion, a 13 percent jump from last fiscal year’s fourth quarter revenues of $11.8 billion.

As to the bottom line, Microsoft brought in a whopping $14.07 billion in reported net income for the year, an 18 percent boost from last year’s $12.6 billion.

And the current fiscal year looks to be another bang up year. “[Microsoft is] looking to deliver another year of double-digit revenue growth [in fiscal 2008],” chief financial officer Chris Liddell said on a conference call with analysts Thursday.

In terms of diluted earnings per share, the company logged $1.42 for the full year and $0.31 for the quarter. Microsoft took a $0.08 per share hit in the fourth quarter due to reserves of $1.06 billion that the company set aside in early July to deal with higher-than-expected failure rates of the Xbox 360 gaming console.

During the conference call, Liddell cited double-digit growth in several business sectors as contributors to the fiscal year’s record-breaking revenue results. Among those, he said, were the Windows client business — including Windows Vista which shipped to businesses in the second fiscal quarter and to consumers at the beginning of the third quarter – and the Office System – including Office 2007 which shipped simultaneously with Vista.

Other contributors included strong sales of SQL Server, Windows Server, and the Xbox 360, he said.

Microsoft officials did not give shipment numbers for Vista or Office 2007 or compare Vista shipments to shipments of Windows XP. Continuing strong growth in sales of PCs worldwide bode well for both products in fiscal 2008, however, he said.

Meanwhile, Liddell presented a continuing positive outlook for the current fiscal year. The company has already announced it will ship Windows Server 2008, SQL Server 2008 and Visual Studio 2008 next February about halfway through fiscal 2008.

Additionally, the company is planning a September 25 launch of HALO 3, the third release of its blockbuster Xbox 360 game.

Microsoft’s $6 billion acquisition of aQuantive is likely to close in August as well, Liddell said.

In the current quarter, which ends September 30, Microsoft told analysts it expects to bring in between $12.4 billion to $12.6 billion. Meanwhile, for the entire year it said it expects to gross in the range of $56.8 billion to $57.8 billion, with diluted earnings in the range of $1.69 to $1.73 per share.

The company plans to provide significantly more information about both fiscal 2007 results and projections for 2008 next Thursday when it hosts its annual financial analysts meeting on its Redmond campus.

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