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Last Updated: Wednesday, 25 April 2007, 22:54 GMT 23:54 UK
iPods and Macs lift Apple profits
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iPod sales see no signs of slowing
Apple sold more than 10.5 million iPods in the first three months of 2007, helping the US technology firm to record an 88% increase in profits.

Profits rose to $770m (384m) from $410m for the same period last year.

The global success of its digital music player and strong demand for its MacBook computers helped Apple's sales to soar from $4.3bn to $5.2bn.

Separately, Apple's board has publicly backed chief executive Steve Jobs amid an ongoing row over share options.

Vote of confidence

It said it had "complete confidence" in Mr Jobs' integrity and leadership.

The statement follows claims by Fred Anderson, Apple's former chief financial officer, that he made Mr Jobs and other board members aware of his concerns about "backdated" share options awarded to bosses in 2001.

Steve Jobs co-operated fully with Apple's independent investigation and with the government's investigation of stock option grants at Apple
Apple statement

US regulators claim the share awards were not disclosed in Apple's accounts and have charged the firm's former senior lawyer with fraudulently trying to alter company records.

Mr Anderson has agreed a settlement with regulators over related charges, agreeing to pay $3.5m in fines while admitting no wrongdoing.

Apple said its own internal investigation had cleared Mr Jobs and other current employees of any misconduct in the matter.

"Steve Jobs co-operated fully with Apple's independent investigation and with the government's investigation of stock option grants at Apple," the statement said.

"The Securities and Exchange Commission investigated the matter thoroughly and its complaint speaks for itself in terms of what it says, what it does not say, who it charges and who it does not charge."

Profit record

Apple said it was "very pleased" with its performance in the three months to 31 March, the most profitable first quarter in its history.

Demand for iPods is up 24% on the same time last year while sales of Macintosh computers rose by 36%, with more than one and half million sold.

"The Mac is clearly gaining market share," said Mr Jobs.

Analysts said the growth figures were impressive, particularly as the first quarter was traditionally a slower time for computer sales.

"The company is growing substantially faster than the market and will continue for some time to come," said Jim Grossman, from brokers Thrivent Financial.




SEE ALSO
Charges brought over Apple shares
24 Apr 07 |  Business
Apple reveals stock option errors
29 Dec 06 |  Business
Apple shares hit ahead of figures
28 Dec 06 |  Business

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