HP confirms strong revenue and profit rise in Q1

20 February 2004 Hewlett-Packard (HP) has reported a positive first quarter, with revenue up 9% from $17.9 billion to $19.5 billion, despite fears that the company had suffered from slower corporate spending in January.

Net income in the company’s first quarter to the end of January was $962 million, up by one-third compared to the same period a year earlier. The figures were attributed to increased sales of servers, PCs and printers.

“HP delivered a solid quarter,” said CEO Carly Fiorina. “In a seasonally weak period we demonstrated HP’s earning potential with our most balanced profit performance since the merger [in 2002] with Compaq.”

Of HP’s $19.5 billion revenue, $6.2 billion was generated in the PC division; $6.2 billion came from printers and imaging products; $3.9 billion from servers, storage and software; and $3.2 billion from services.

PC sales rose by a quarter in unit shipments and by 20% in revenue terms. Notebook computer unit shipments, in particular, increased by half with revenue increasing by 42%, said Fiorina. “For the second quarter in a row, we grew both desktop and notebook revenue twice as fast as our nearest competitor [Dell].”

The results were in line with what HP had indicated last week, after the company had taken the unusual step of pre-announcing revenues to suppress rumours it had suffered a weak first quarter.

But despite the results, many analysts are cautious about HP’s ability to sustain such a performance throughout the year, particularly compared to its main rivals Dell and IBM.

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Ben Rossi

Ben was Vitesse Media's editorial director, leading content creation and editorial strategy across all Vitesse products, including its market-leading B2B and consumer magazines, websites, research and...

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