E-commerce giant Alibaba BABA reported an unexpected surge in sales for its fiscal fourth quarter on Friday, thanks to lockdown measures that kept consumers indoors even earlier than in Europe and North America, though net income took a bit of a hit.
The so-called Amazon of China said sales for its fiscal fourth quarter ended in March rose 22% to $16.14 billion, topping analysts' estimates of a $15.28 billion. Cloud computing revenues, Alibaba said, rose 58% to a record $1.73 billion.
Earnings, however, weren't quite as solid, coming in at an adjusted $1.30 a share, a lot better than the 86 cents a share analysts were polled by FactSet were expecting but only two cents above the $1.28 a share it earned a year ago.
“Our overall business continued to experience strong growth, with a total annual active consumer base of 960 million globally, despite concluding the fiscal year with a quarter impacted by the economic effects of the Covid-19 pandemic," said CEO Daniel Zhang.
That said, "The pandemic has fundamentally altered consumer behavior and enterprise operations, making digital adoption and transformation a necessity," he said.
Alibaba said gross merchandise value across its 'digital economy' passed the $1 trillion mark this year, a record for Asia's most valuable tech company. For fiscal 2021, meanwhile, the company sees revenue of approximately $91 billion.
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