Amazing amazon announced its Quarter 1 results yesterday which seemed to please the market with its shares up by 10% after hours (and today seems to be settling up about 15%). Their earnings per share in particular were well ahead of market estimates.
As is their practice no product unit sales information for Kindle, Fires or e-readers was provided. The only comment was “Kindle Fire remains the #1 bestselling, most gifted, and most wished for product across the millions of items available on Amazon.com since launch.” A commentator saw some hints within their statements but we were not convinced!
We’ve tried a little experiment based on their financials but to be honest are not sure it moves us forward!
|Q1 2012||Q4 2011|
|$ Millions||$ Millions|
|Net product sales (1)||11,249||15,309|
|Net services sales (2)||1,936||2,122|
|Kindle Fire unit sales estimate mn||6.0||4.0|
|Product revenues @ $199||1,194||796|
|Content revenues @ $136||816||544|
|(1) Represents revenue from the sale of products and related shipping fees and digital content where we are the seller of record.|
|(2) Represents third-party seller fees earned (including commissions) and related shipping fees, digital content subscriptions, and non-retail activities.|
In the context of their revenues for the last 2 quarters when Kindle Fires were on sale & using our estimates of 6 million unit sales in quarter 1 this year and 4 million in quarter 4 (2011) we’ve calculated the possible revenues for product & content (which has been assessed as $136)
We know there are time lags & other factors but the $2bn possible revenues in the last quarter would represent almost 80% of the total increase in revenues of $2.551 billion from quarter 1 of 2011. Whilst there has been some cannibalisation re Kindle reader sales we think the 6 million is possibly at the top end of any range.
Some have estimated the sales to be as high as 10 million but we doubt this.
ComScore yesterday released a new survey of “Device Essentials” showing rapid market share growth by the Kindle Fire to over 50% of the US android market by February this year. We are pretty sure this data is derived from usage statistics. On the unit sales front we would certainly expect Kindle Fires to have > 50% of the android market world wide and be second behind the iPad this year.
So unit sales/shipments estimates are at best a bit of an art unless as with admirable Apple they actually publish the information!
To prove our point here are the latest two estimates of smartphone shipments for the last quarter from a couple of the leading companies. – enough said we think!