(Adds analysts, executive comments, forecast; Updates share price)
By Vibhuti Sharma
June 20 (Reuters) - Micron Technology Inc's third-quarter profit and current-quarter forecasts beat Street's expectations, as the chipmaker benefited from a strong demand for its memory chips used in computers and smartphones amid tight supply.
The company has been selling more memory chips at higher prices as customers look to store data and apps in smartphones and companies shift to cloud.
Micron said it expects fourth-quarter revenue in the range of $8.0 billion and $8.4 billion, compared with analysts' estimate of $8.07 billion.
"Based on a share count of about 1.23 billion shares, these results should drive EPS of $3.30, plus or minus $0.07", Micron's Chief Financial Officer David Zinsner said on a conference call with analysts.
The company has 1.16 billion outstanding shares, according to Thomson Reuters data.
Analysts on average expect the company to post a profit of $3.22 per share in the fourth quarter.
Shares of the company rose nearly 3 percent to $60.6 after the bell.
"Micron continues to have near-hurricane force winds at its back blowing the firm forward," Eric Schiffer, chief executive officer of private equity firm Patriarch said.
Revenue from dynamic random access memory (DRAM) chips used in computers and servers surged 56 percent in the third quarter, accounting for over 71 percent of its net sales.
The Boise, Idaho-based company's gross margins rose 81 percent to $4.72 billion in the quarter.
"Gross margins also widened and was near our view, as we continue to see benefits from higher volume, cost-per-bit reductions and an improving mix of specialty DRAM and higher-end NAND chips," Angelo Zino, senior equity analyst at CFRA said.
Net income attributable to the chipmaker rose to $3.82 billion, or $3.10 per share, in the quarter ended May 31, from $1.65 billion, or $1.40 per share, a year earlier.
Excluding certain items, Micron earned $3.15 per share, one cent above the analysts' average estimate.
Net sales rose 40 percent to 7.80 billion, beating estimates of $7.77 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. (Reporting by Vibhuti Sharma in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber)