Alibaba posts $700 million quarterly cloud revenues, cites AI in strategic plays

Revenues at Alibaba have soared to $9.8 billion US (£7.2bn) for the company’s most recent quarter – with cloud computing revenues nudging $700 million.

The figures represent another good quarter for the Chinese eCommerce giant, whose cloud push continues to intensify. Cloud revenues, which topped at $699m went up 103% year over year, while total revenues saw a 61% yearly increase.

Alibaba puts its revenues in four buckets; core commerce, which was at $8.1bn, cloud, digital media and entertainment, at $840m, and ‘innovation initiatives and others’, at $158m.

The company said it was “seeing significant traction and diversification of customers and revenue” and that it “will continue to invest to further expand the market by developing value-added products and features.”

New customers highlighted by the company in the quarter included the China National Petroleum Corporation, Cathay Pacific, and – outside of China – the Malaysian government, which is using Alibaba’s cloud in an Internet of Things play around traffic management.

Like the rest of its competition in the cloud infrastructure space, Alibaba cited the importance artificial intelligence (AI) is playing in its roadmap. There were more than 300 new products and features launched by Alibaba Cloud in the most recent quarter with 20% focused on AI, data management and security, the company said.

Other initiatives the company has introduced this year included an expansion into Turkey, alongside further product launches in Europe, as well as the opening of data centre facilities in Indonesia.

“Looking ahead to fiscal 2019, we expect overall revenue growth above 60%, reflecting our confidence in our core business as well as positive momentum in new businesses,” said Maggie Wu, Alibaba Group chief financial officer in a statement. “We expect our new growth initiatives will drive long-term, sustainable value for our customers and partners and increase our total addressable market.”

You can read the full financial statement here (pdf).

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