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Despite the announcement yesterday that CEO Steve Jobs will be out on medical leave for an undisclosed amount of time, Wall Street should have little to whine about Tuesday as Apple’s fiscal 2011 first quarter results have been announced, with another record-breaking quarter -- revenue is up 71 percent, while earnings have grown 78 percent.
Apple has announced their financial results for the fiscal 2011 first quarter which ended December 25, 2010 and it’s a doozy: $26.74 billion in revenue and a net quarterly profit of $6 billion or $6.43 per diluted share. Last year at this time, Apple was reporting revenue of $15.68 billion and net quarterly profit of $3.38 billion or $3.67 per diluted share. Long story short: Another record-breaking quarter for the company.
“We had a phenomenal holiday quarter with record Mac, iPhone and iPad sales,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “We are firing on all cylinders and we’ve got some exciting things in the pipeline for this year including iPhone 4 on Verizon which customers can’t wait to get their hands on.”
Apple’s numbers include 4.13 million Macs sold during the quarter, a whopping 23 percent increase over the same quarter a year ago -- almost eight times more growth than the rest of the PC market, according to IDC estimates. iPhone sales racked up 16.24 million units, which is an amazing 86 percent growth over last year at the same time. The iPad held its own with 7.33 million units sold, while the iPod declined by seven percent from a year ago, but still moved 19.45 million units -- well over analysts’ predictions of 17.33 million.
Apple’s gross margin was 38.5 percent compared to 40.9 percent a year ago in the same quarter. International sales continue to be a substantial part of Apple’s revenue, accounting for 62 percent of the quarter this time around.
“We couldn’t be happier with the performance of our business, generating $9.8 billion in cash flow from operations during the December quarter,” said Peter Oppenheimer, Apple’s CFO. “Looking ahead to the second fiscal quarter of 2011, we expect revenue of about $22 billion and we expect diluted earnings per share of about $4.90.”
So how does the bigger picture break down for the Mac? Quite well, with laptops making up 70 percent of all Mac sales -- a new record for the company, which certainly shows that buyers love the portability of Apple’s MacBook, MacBook Air and MacBook Pro line. Mac revenues made up the second highest chunk of Apple’s revenue at 20 percent.
iOS products now make up a full 75 percent of Apple’s product line -- a category that didn’t exist until 2007 with the release of the original iPhone. The company has now sold more than 160 million iOS devices, which means the portable devices now account for nearly two-thirds of Apple’s product lineup.
Apple’s conference call kicked off at 2pm PST / 5pm EST with CFO Peter Oppenheimer reiterating the impressive numbers for the quarter, with growth in every geographic segment, including 50 percent growth in Japan and Asia-Pacific alone. Apple’s Mac App Store opened on January 6 in 90 countries with more than 1,000 apps, racking up more than one million downloads on the first day alone.
On the iPod front, Apple’s iPod touch actually grew 27 percent year-over-year and made up a full half of all iPods sold in the quarter. iPods now make up more than 70 percent of the U.S. MP3 player market, with 19 million sold in the quarter versus 21 million in the same quarter a year ago. Apple ended the quarter within their target range of four to six weeks’ worth of iPod channel inventory.
The iTunes Store continues to rake in the cash, with revenue exceeding $1.1 billion, which included the debut of The Beatles in digital form as well as movie rentals and purchases in Japan. iTunes users are now renting or purchasing more than 400,000 TV episodes and 150,000 feature films every day.
iPhone sales for the quarter nearly doubled, with 16.2 million units sold compared to last year at the same time with 8.7 million. That’s a growth spurt of 86 percent, compared to 70 percent growth for the global smartphone market in the same quarter. iPhone handset revenue made up $10.74 billion compared to $5.85 billion a year ago in the same quarter.
Apple finished the quarter with the iPhone in 185 carriers in 90 countries, with enterprise customers continuing to embrace the device -- 88 of the Fortune 100 companies, and a number of Fortune 500 companies which include DuPont, Staples, Starbucks and global customers such as Nissan.
iPhone availability continues to be a challenge for Apple, with “a sizeable backlog” at the end of the quarter; Oppenheimer believes that their numbers would have been even higher if they had been able to supply more.
The iPad added a sequential increase of three million for the quarter, selling 7.3 million units. More than 80 percent of Fortune 100 companies are either deploying or piloting the device, which is an increase of 65 percent over the September quarter. Among the companies adding the iPad are J.P. Morgan, Wells Fargo, ADM and Dupont.
iPad revenue made up $4.61 billion as the tablet continues to expand to more countries and sales channels, with inventory increased by 525,000 units during the quarter. Apple ended the quarter with a target iPad inventory of four to six weeks. The iPad expanded to 15 more countries in January, taking the total to more than 60.
Apple Stores were on fire in the first quarter, with 323 stores worldwide, 87 of which are outside the United States. China’s four stores actually have the highest traffic and revenue, which average $12 million per store, a 69 percent increase -- the first time that revenue exceeded $1 billion at the retail end. Apple’s retail outlets saw 75.7 million customers combined during the quarter.
Apple’s mountain of cash has been a source of some controversy among shareholders in recent months, and that amount ballooned yet again to $59.7 billion at the end of December, up from $51 billion at the end of the prior September quarter. The company’s cash flow increased 69 percent year over year and Apple spent $3.9 million in inventory pre-payment over a two-year period, making $1.05 billion in payments in the March quarter.
Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster was the first of the callers to broach the question of CEO Steve Jobs’ medical leave, although he didn’t mention the executive by name and instead queried the company’s long-term plans. COO Tim Cook didn’t directly answer the question, but fired back with plenty of data to effectively diffuse additional questions along the same line.
Cook did reveal that Apple has made significant investments and long-term commitments with three component suppliers, although the COO was hesitant to disclose exactly what component(s) he was referring to, not wanting to give the competition too much of an advantage. Cook did recant Apple’s more than $1 billion investment in flash memory back in 2005, recognizing how important the component would soon become to their business.
Tablets were still on the minds of many callers, with one Goldman Sachs analyst pressing Cook on how Apple perceives the “competitive landscape” regarding the iPad. “If you look at what’s shipping today, there’s not much out there,” Cook replied confidently. The COO broke the tablet market into two categories, with larger, Windows-driven tablets on one end and Android tablets on the other.
Cook confronted recent claims that the iPad is nothing more than an oversized iPod touch by making the same accusation of Google’s Android -- and claims “from our point of view, customers are frankly not interested in them.”
“Seven-inch tablets… are kind of a bizarre product in our view,” Cook said, once again throwing cold water on speculation that a smaller iPad will appear anytime soon. However, the COO later claimed that the tablet market opportunity is huge -- with Apple leading the charge thanks to the iPad.
Sanford Bernstein analyst Toni Sacconaghi pressed for details on the company’s plans to extend their reach to remaining large international carriers, specifically those using the same CDMA technology as Verizon Wireless, who will start offering the iPhone 4 on February 10. COO Cook wouldn’t offer specifics, but said that the company continues to explore their options as they move from single-carrier exclusives to multi-carrier deals worldwide. Cook confirmed that Apple no longer holds exclusive carrier deals in any country, with the AT&T deal being the last one to fall.
Apple’s operating expenses were $2.74 billion for the first quarter, with a tax rate of 24.6 percent thanks to the one-time benefit of a research and development tax credit from January, 2010. The tax rate remained 25.5 percent for the rest of the fiscal year.
The first-quarter fiscal year 2011 conference call is available on Apple’s website for all to hear, and will also be available as a podcast via iTunes.
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