Intel posted better-than-expected earnings for the third quarter fiscal 2018 in what CFO and interim CEO Bob Swan called “the best quarter in our 50-year history.”
The chip giant’s third-quarter revenue of $19.2 billion was an all-time record, up 19 percent year over year, with all business groups posting record revenue. Intel’s Data Center Group revenue grew 26 percent year over year to $6.1 billion, boosted by cloud and communication service provider demand. Its cloud business grew 50 percent year over year and communication service provider business grew 30 percent “as customers continue to transform their networks with Intel architecture as they prepare for 5G,” Swan said on a call with investors. Enterprise revenue was up 1 percent.
Looking ahead, Intel forecast $1.22 in earnings per share on $19 billion in revenue in the fourth quarter. The company also raised its guidance for the full year by $1.7 billion, to $71.2 billion in revenue, and $4.53 in earnings per share.
“We expect 2018 to be the best year ever and our third record year in a row,” Swan said. Intel’s stock rose as much as 6 percent Thursday following its strong earnings report.
The record revenue is a bright point in what has been a tough year for the company. In June CEO Brian Krzanich was ousted from his position for violating the company’s non-fraternization policy by having a past consensual relationship with an employee. The company continues to search for a successor.
And in August Intel admitted difficulty developing its processor technology for 10-nanometer chip manufacturing. On the earnings call, executives said the company is on track to ship its 10-nanometer chips “by holiday of 2019.”
The company said it’s also on track to roll out its next-generation Xeon Scalable processors during the fourth quarter of this year. These chips, codenamed Cascade Lake, “will include hardware mitigations for Spectre and Meltdown,” said Jennifer Huffstetler, VP and GM of data center product management, in an earlier interview.