Microsoft last night said its profit in the recently ended quarter soared on the back of revenue from services hosted in the internet cloud and its career-focused social network LinkedIn. 

Microsoft reported net income of $8.8 billion on revenue of $29.1 billion in the quarter that ended on September 30, up 34% and 19% respectively from the same time a year earlier. 

Shares in the Redmond, Washington-based technology giant were up 4.75% to $107.18 in after-market trades that followed release of the earnings figures for the first quarter of its fiscal year. 

"We are off to a great start in fiscal 2019, a result of our innovation and the trust customers are placing in us to power their digital transformation," Microsoft chief executive Satya Nadella said in a release. 

"We're excited to help our customers build the digital capability they need to thrive and grow,"  he added. 
Nadella has lead a transformation at Microsoft from a company focused on software installed on machines in homes and businesses to making money from services hosted on the internet and available from a broad array of devices regardless of who makes them. 

"Our record results for Q1 reflect our commitment to long-term strategic investments and consistent execution to drive revenue growth and operating margin expansion," said chief financial officer Amy Hood. 

"We see continued demand for our cloud offerings, reflected in our commercial cloud revenue of $8.5 billion, up 47% year-over-year." 

Money taken in by a productivity and business processes unit rose to $9.8 billion, including strong growth in cloud-based Office productivity products aimed at consumers and companies, according to Microsoft. 

LinkedIn revenue grew 33% in the quarter, with the career-oriented networking service boasting record levels of engagement by users. 

Microsoft's cloud platform Azure, which performs computing and storage for companies at online data centers, saw revenue grow 76%. 
Azure is part of a Microsoft "Intelligent Cloud" division that, overall, reported revenue up 24% to $8.6 billion.

Microsoft, which makes Xbox consoles, also saw revenue from gaming hardware, software and services jump 44%. 

The company said it returned $6.1 billion to shareholders during the quarter in the form of dividends or share buy-backs.