Top international headlines: Tech companies record strong revenue growth

Tech and social media companies continue to post impressive results thanks to an increase in online activity.

Online ads, a big move to cloud computing and increased appetite for social media and devices sees the US top tech companies continue to grow their revenue, with Alphabet beating analysts’ estimates by 10 percent, Microsoft posting a 21 percent increase in revenue and Facebook recording a sharp rise in quarterly profit. Meanwhile, Apple raises a red flag as supply constraints affect its devices and old toys find resonance with a new generation of kids.

‘Rising tide of online activity’ leads to rise in Alphabet’s net income
Alphabet chief executive Sundar Pichai credited a “rising tide of online activity in many parts of the world” for driving profits almost three times higher than in the same period of last year.

As Wall Street had hoped, ad sales on the platform surged in the second quarter, pushing net income to $18.53 billion (R271 billion) – beating analysts’ estimates by around 10 percent – with revenue for the period topping $61.9 billion (R906 billion), reports the Financial Times.

Microsoft sees 21 percent jump in revenue
Microsoft has posted a 21 percent increase in revenue as it saw a flood of new business in areas like cloud computing, LinkedIn advertising and business applications.

In the three months to the end of June, Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform reached 51 percent, up from growth of 46 percent in the preceding three months, and the fastest expansion rate in five quarters, according to the Financial Times.

Not just child’s play
Mattel, the world’s second-largest toymaker, reported a revenue rise of 40 percent to $1.03 billion (R15 million).

The results show brands such as Barbie and Hot Wheels continuing to resonate with a new generation of kids: Global billings for dolls grew 51 percent, toy vehicles expanded 68 percent while the infant, toddler and preschool category grew 15 percent, reports Bloomberg. Action-figure sales benefited from a new “Masters of the Universe” TV show airing on Netflix Inc., said CEO Ynon Kreiz.

Apple flags supply constraints
Apple has warned that sales growth may be slowing and supplies are getting tight, putting a damper on investor excitement following a record-setting third quarter.

The company said that supply constraints will affect the iPhone and iPad in the current quarter. Decelerating demand for services also will drive the slowdown. Apple declined to provide specific revenue forecasts, a practice it adopted during the pandemic, reports Bloomberg.

Sharp quarterly growth for Facebook
Facebook posted sharp growth in quarterly revenue and profit, fuelled by robust digital ad spending, as it continues to face scrutiny over the size and influence of its platforms.

The social media company’s second-quarter earnings report showed that advertisers’ greater focus over the past year on reaching consumers online continues to be a tailwind, reports the Wall Street Journal. Analysts also said the parent of Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp continued to benefit from a rise in consumers making purchases from brands directly through its apps.