Dell vs Apple – Apple Makes Mo Money

Dell just came out with its fiscal first quarter 2006 results. One word: spectacular. Sales of $13.39 billion, and a net profit of $934 million (37 cents a share.) Dell’s gross margin was huge $2.491 billion. Dell results show that you need to be massive in post bubble technology world to make some serious cash. Right? ….. Wrong. Just for the heck of it, I decided to compare Dell’s results with Apple’s fiscal 2Q 2005 results. (PS: I know Dell sells many more products, but the product mix is still pretty similar!) Apple had sales of $3.24 billion, and a net profit of $290 million (34 cents a share) and had a gross margin of $938 million. Apple’s net profits are 8.96% of its sales, and gross margins are around 29%. Dell’s net profits are 6.98% of sales, and gross margin is about 18.6% of sales. (Ironically, Dell spends about $4 million less on R&D.) In other words, size isn’t everything. Now when you look at those numbers, you know you can be small and occupy a small niche and yet make more money than the giants.

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