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Apr 26, 2018

Intel profit, revenue beat on demand for data centre chips

Intel logo is seen behind LED lights in this illustration taken January 5, 2018.

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Intel Corp beat earnings expectations for the first quarter and raised its full-year revenue and profit forecasts on Thursday, driven by higher demand for chips from data centres and personal computers.

Shares of the Santa Clara, California-based chipmaker rose 8 per cent to US$57.29 in after-market trading after the chipmaker said it expects full-year revenue of US$67.5 billion, up US$2.5 billion from its prior guidance.

Intel has been focused on transforming itself from a supplier of personal computers to a maker of chips for growing data center business and newer areas such as driverless cars and artificial intelligence. That shift appeared to be taking hold as revenues for Intel's data center business accounted for almost half of the company's revenue in the first quarter, the highest proportion ever.

Intel said fresh demand for applications such as artificial intelligence fueled the data center business.

"The strength of IntelRs business underscores my confidence in our strategy and the unrelenting demand for compute performance fueled by the growth of data," Intel CEO Brian Krzanich said in a statement.

The better-than-expected results and brighter forecast pushed shares to their highest in at least five years. The data center results also suggest the chipmaker's large customers have not been deterred by two chip flaws that emerged earlier this year.

Revenue at Intel's client computing, which supplies chips to PC makers and is the biggest contributor to sales, rose 3 per cent to US$8.2 billion, beating estimates of US$7.91 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.



Revenue from the data center business, seen as key to its shift from PC supplier, recorded its biggest gain of 24 per cent to US$5.2 billion, beating estimates of US$4.73 billion.

The company's net income rose to US$4.45 billion, or 93 cents per share, in the quarter ended March 31, from US$2.96 billion, or 61 cents per share, a year earlier.

Net revenue rose to US$16.07 billion from US$14.80 billion.

Excluding items, the chipmaker earned 87 cents per share.

Analysts on average were expecting Intel to report a profit of 72 cents per share on a revenue of US$15.08 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.