Ericsson, IBM and Jio publish financial results

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Ericsson, IBM and Jio have all released their latest financial results in recent days, kicking off the latest reporting season.

Ericsson reported net income of SEK23 billion ($17.6 billion) for the full year and, minus restructuring charges, gross margin was 43.5%, "driven primarily by strengthened operational leverage in networks", the firm said.

Ericsson saw its group organic sales grow by 4% over the year with network sales up 7%. Despite pushing sales up in 2020, once again Mainland China proved the thorn in Ericsson's side as sales there dropped by SEK7.7 billion. Excluding Mainland China, organic sales growth was 8%.

 Free cash flow before M&A for the full year amounted to SEK32.1 billion ($22.3 billion) and net cash was SEK65.8 billion ($41.9 billion) on December 31, 2021.

 Highlights over the quarter included the $6.2 billion all-case acquisition of Vonage, which gives Ericsson a foothold in the CPaaS segment.

In his statement pertaining to the latest financial results, president and CEO Börje Ekholm said the deal "will give us the foundation to develop a Global Network Platform to drive innovation on top of the 5G networks".

The full-year EBIT margin was 13.9%, on which Ekholm said: "We reached our 2022 target one year early, while absorbing significantly increased investments in R&D, Enterprise, cybersecurity and compliance."

His comment continued: "This adds to already strong progress in 2021 in our organic enterprise portfolio - Dedicated Networks and IoT - and follows the successful integration of Cradlepoint.

IBM – which not long ago published research concluding the "one vendor approach to cloud is dead" – saw its hybrid cloud revenue increase in 20% over the full year – 19% in constant currency – and 16% in the fourth quarter – 18% in constant currency.

"In 2021, we continued to invest for the future by increasing R&D spending, expanding our ecosystem and acquiring 15 companies to strengthen our hybrid cloud and AI capabilities," said James Kavanaugh, IBM senior vice president and chief financial officer. "With the separation of Kyndryl we now have taken the next step in the evolution of our strategy, creating value through focus and strengthening our financial profile."

Meanwhile the infrastructure division posted less buoyant results. It saw revenues of $4.4 billion, down 0.2%, up 1.7 % at constant currency, including incremental external sales to Kyndryl. Hybrid Infrastructure was flat, but up 2% in constant currency, and hybrid cloud revenue dropped 12%, or 11% at constant currency.

Highlights from IBM over the quarter included the listing of Kyndril and the launch of IBM Z.

IBM Z posted a 6% decline in its revenues, or 4% at constant currency.

The firm the year with $7.6 billion of cash on hand (which includes marketable securities), down by $6.7 billion from a year ago and  reflecting acquisitions of $3.3 billion and debt reduction payments.

Debt also dropped significantly, down $9.6 billion since the end of 2020, and down more than $21 billion since closing the Red Hat acquisition. The company returned $5.9 billion to shareholders in dividends.

Meanwhile over at Reliance Industries, the latest results marked a new record for group profits.

For its part, Jio Platforms pulled in an additional 13.8% in gross revenue, to reach $3.3 billion adjusted for Interconnect Usage Charges (IUC). Net profit for the quarter was $511 million), up by 8.9%, while cash profit increased 14.7% to reach $1.2 billion.

Average revenue per user (ARPU) during the quarter stood at ₹151.6 per subscriber per month and total data traffic increased 47.8%, totalling 23.4 billion gigabytes during the quarter.

Mukesh D. Ambani, chairman and managing director, Reliance Industries Limited said: “I am happy to announce that Reliance has posted best-ever quarterly performance in 3Q FY22 with strong contribution from all our businesses. Both our consumer businesses, Retail and Digital services have recorded highest ever revenues and EBITDA. During this quarter, we continued to focus on strategic investments and partnerships across our businesses to drive future growth."


Results are also due this week from AT&T, Verizon and Telia, among others.