Sunday, 16 January 2011

Real Profitability Part I: The Big Three and Four

After last post about the wondrous differences between absolute statistics and relative statistics, I decided to do a post and show you what I carry in my back-pocket before attending an event where The Big Three (GOOG, MSFT and AAPL) and The Big Four (ORCL, SAP, IBM, HPQ) announce last year's figures and achievements

It enables me to cut through the chase and relate back Hallelujah-stats to their sober state. Because whatever the financial climate, internal and / or external, no company is ever doing really really bad - until after they get bought or bankrupted, that is

So, here are my figures - use them wisely. I went through every annual report from 2004 till 2010, 2010 not being available for every company yet, and took revenue and operating income or operating profit. I rounded everything down to one digit, and then did the math. All in billions.
A big cave canem there: only SAP reports in euros, the rest in dollars
  • First, the boring part: absolute figures (wondering about the order? You won't in a minute)

I like to look at revenue, operating profit and R&D, and play a bit with the figures there. Percentages are important, but most important are percentages of percentages of course. This post would be too long if I explained any of it, these figures are nice enough on their own
  • Second, the really sexy stuff: all this but taking into account the number of employees, so here are the figures per employee for every one of these companies: (all in thousands)
Nice, isn't it? Yes, the average Google and Apple employee revenues one million dollar. And the funny thing is, although the companies are ordered by profit per employee, that's also the exact same order when they'd been ordered by R&D per employee (HP being a killjoy there). Relationship much?

Next up: system integrators - and believe me, you're in for a BIG surprise

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