Western Digital tops profit expectations on demand from cloud-computing customers

(Reuters) - Western Digital surpassed expectations for quarterly revenue and profit on Thursday, riding on a surge in demand for its data storage products from cloud service providers.

The results are the latest sign that demand for memory chips is improving, after earnings of larger rivals Micron Technology and Samsung Electronics also showed a rebound in prices of the semiconductors following a severe downturn.

"We are in the early innings of unlocking the full potential of this company, and as industry supply and demand dynamics continue to improve, we will remain disciplined around our capital spending," said Western Digital CEO David Goeckeler.

Goeckeler is set to lead the company's flash memory business after its planned separation from the traditional hard-disk drive unit, expected to complete in the second half of 2024.

Western Digital said its revenue rose 23% to $3.46 billion in the three months ended March 29, beating LSEG estimates of $3.36 billion. Its adjusted earnings per share of 63 cents were also higher than expectations of 21 cents.

Revenue from the cloud market grew 29% to $1.55 billion as the company benefited from higher shipments of memory products used in data centers as well as increased per-unit pricing.

Western Digital forecast its current-quarter revenue to be between $3.60 billion and $3.80 billion, in line with analysts' estimate of $3.69 billion.

Shares of the company were down about 1% in extended trading.

(Reporting by Aditya Soni in Bengaluru; Editing by Shilpi Majumdar)