Zoom Doubles Down on AI Strategy to Fuel Future Growth


Zoom is making a bet that artificial intelligence will be the key to driving growth and expanding its business beyond video conferencing. The video communications company’s first-quarter earnings call was dominated by discussions of AI, with executives highlighting Zoom’s significant investments in the technology and the early success of its new AI-powered offerings.

Leading the charge is Zoom Workplace, a comprehensive collaboration platform infused with AI capabilities that launched in March. The platform includes features like AI-powered lighting, noise cancellation and virtual assistants to enhance productivity and employee engagement. Zoom Contact Center, another major AI initiative, has also reached a milestone. According to founder and CEO Eric Yuan, the product is now “ready for prime time,” with a feature set that includes AI-powered agent assistance, chatbots and analytics.

“Embedding AI across all aspects of Zoom Workplace and Business Services is a key priority as we continue to drive productivity and engagement for our customers,” said Chief Financial Officer Kelly Steckelberg.

First-Quarter Results Show $1.1 Billion Revenue

The focus on AI appears to be paying dividends for Zoom, as evidenced by its strong first-quarter results. The company exceeded expectations with revenue of $1.141 billion, up 3% year over year, and adjusted profit that also surpassed estimates. Zoom raised its full-year guidance, projecting revenue between $4.61 billion and $4.62 billion, representing approximately 2% growth from the previous year.

Yuan attributed the company’s success to its “rapid innovation” and AI-driven approach, which have enabled Zoom to expand its offerings and compete effectively in new markets. In the contact center space, Zoom secured several notable wins against top-tier cloud-based providers, including a deal with over 1,000 seats. Yuan emphasized that customers trust Zoom’s brand and appreciate the company’s dedication to innovation and customer feedback.

AI has also become a critical differentiator for Zoom as it faces competition from rivals like Microsoft Corp., which has bundled its Teams video conferencing solution with other products. While Microsoft’s strategy has had some impact in recent years, Yuan believes Zoom is now in a stronger position. He argued that when customers evaluate the total cost of ownership, factors such as user experience, support costs, and AI capabilities, Zoom emerges as the preferred choice.

“Even if bundled, the price is sort of free. However, when customers deep dive, they look at the total cost of ownership,” Yuan said.

Looking ahead, Zoom sees AI playing an increasingly crucial role across its product portfolio. In addition to Zoom Workplace and Contact Center, the company is leveraging AI to enhance Zoom Phone with features like AI-powered transcription and sentiment analysis. The goal is to create a seamless, intelligent communication platform that boosts productivity and efficiency for businesses of all sizes.

Zoom’s AI push comes as the company looks to maintain its growth trajectory in a post-pandemic landscape where demand for video conferencing has somewhat stabilized. The company expects revenue growth to decelerate to around 1% in the current quarter before picking up steam in the latter half of the year.

Strong Cash Reserves

Despite the near-term challenges, Zoom remains well-positioned to invest in its AI-driven growth strategy. The company ended the quarter with $7.4 billion in cash and marketable securities, providing ample resources to fund its AI initiatives. Additionally, Zoom repurchased $150 million worth of stock as part of a $1.5 billion buyback program announced in February.