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Microsoft profits increased by 21%, providing cushion for gaming drive

As the epidemic kept many office workers at least partially at home, demand for Microsoft’s cloud-computing services and work applications helped improve the company’s quarterly profits by 21 percent.

The Redmond, Washington-based firm announced a profit of $18.8 billion for the fiscal second quarter on Tuesday. It made $51.7 billion in revenue from October through December, up 20 percent from the same period last year.

CEO Satya Nadella said the company is shifting from a moment of pandemic-fueled demand to one in which digital technology may assist overcome economic limits to “increase productivity while keeping prices down” in a call with investors.

“Another area where we see strength is gaming,” stated Nadella. “In terms of our consumer category, that’s where we’ve doubled down.”

Microsoft unveiled plans to buy high-profile game producer Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion last week, in an all-cash deal that might be the most expensive tech acquisition in history if antitrust regulators approve it. It might also propel Microsoft ahead of Nintendo to become one of the top three video gaming firms, with Sony and Tencent.

However, the company’s financial results released Tuesday demonstrate that business-focused offerings like Microsoft’s Azure cloud computing platform and software products continue to drive the company’s development.


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