(Adds CEO, analyst comments, details on results, share price)
By Laharee Chatterjee
March 22 (Reuters) - Micron Technology Inc reported a better-than-expected quarterly profit on Thursday and raised its revenue forecast for the current quarter on higher pricing for its memory chips amid tight supplies and demand from cloud and automotive customers.
The company’s shares oscillated between gains and losses in extended trading. They were last down nearly 3 percent at $57.20.
A disruption in nitrogen supply at one of the company’s facilities would affect DRAM production by 2 to 3 percent in the third quarter, Chief Executive Officer Sanjay Mehrotra said on a post-earnings call.
Revenue from dynamic random access memory (DRAM) chips used in computers and servers surged 76 percent in the reported quarter, accounting for 71 percent of its net sales.
“I believe we will continue to drive strong demand for DRAM in the years ahead,” Mehrotra said.
The growing adoption of artificial intelligence requiring higher capacity and more powerful memory and storage solutions is also expected to drive growth, Mehrotra added.
“Diversifying end markets for DRAM and controlling capacity to match demand is driving growth,” Stifel Nicolaus analyst Kevin Cassidy said.
Micron’s revenue from NAND chips, used in USB drives and digital cameras, rose 28 percent in the second quarter ended March 1.
The company also raised the higher end of its third-quarter revenue forecast to $7.60 billion from $7.35 billion, while retaining the lower end at $7.20 billion.
Gross margin jumped to 58.1 percent from 36.7 percent in the quarter.
Excluding items, the company earned $2.82 per share. Net sales rose 58.2 percent to $7.35 billion.
Analysts on average had expected Micron to report a profit of $2.74 per share on sales of $7.28 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
The company’s shares have more than doubled in value in the past 12 months. (Reporting by Laharee Chatterjee in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta)