Our friends over at Cloud Wars recently posted an interesting prediction about Microsoft's cloud growth in 2022 with the belief it could "top $100 billion," by the end of the year.
During its earnings call last quarter, Microsoft missed its own lofty projections of revenue growth by a hair, and while most investors still seemed relatively pleased with the net results, other bullish ones were quick to point out the slowing growth the company's cloud division was experiencing year over year.
The cloud services market hasn't reached saturation just yet, but competition is calcifying among a handful of known players that includes AWS, Google, Microsoft, Oracle, and IBM, and the range between unincumbered competitor growth is shrinking.
The folks over at Cloud Wars monitor the minutia of the cloud industry and believe that Microsoft could finish the calendar year of 2022 with a 25% larger cloud business than its next closest rival Amazon.
Before the pedantic crowd starts crowing, Amazon is still the largest cloud services provider in the sector. Author Bob Evans, is distinguishing the company's predicted growth between calendar year and fiscal year for Microsoft which normally runs from July 1 and ends June 30.
Evans lays out a simple and feasible plan that could lead Microsoft to a $100 billion plus year with the following:
For the quarter ended March 31 (Microsoft’s FY22 Q3), its cloud revenue was $23.4 billion, up 32%; and
For the quarter ended June 30 (FY22 Q4), cloud revenue was $25 billion, up 28%.
That adds up to $48.4 billion for the first half of calendar 2022, meaning Microsoft has to generate second-half cloud revenue of $51.6 billion to reach $100 billion for the year. That’s an average of $25.8 billion per quarter. While it would be foolish to say that achieving such volume is in the bag, I do not recall Microsoft’s cloud revenue going down in sequential quarters for the past handful of years. So, the fact that Microsoft hit $25 billion in the second calendar quarter means it has a very good chance of bumping that up to at least $25.8 billion in each of the next two quarters.
As mentioned, Cloud Wars does keep a meticulous eye on the cloud sector and Evans backs up his claims with additional details outlined in seven primary factors that have already leading to revenue growth by Microsoft's cloud services that include an expanding product line, aggressive end-to-end security solutions, commitments to low-code/no-code developer tools, existing and future multi-year and multi-billion dollar contracts and growing collaborative and customer-centric ethos at the company.
There is still plenty of room for cloud services growth in the general market, but with its relatively late start, the revenue gains Microsoft continues to clock quarter over quarter is still fairly impressive and bodes well for the company's diversified product portfolio.