A growing demand for Microsoft's Windows operating system took the company up five places on Fortune's most profitable list, with an 11.6% jump in profits in its 2007 fiscal year ended June 30.
Despite an initial lukewarm reception for Microsoft's Vista operating system, the software giant is stronger than ever before. Last year, Microsoft completed its biggest acquisition ever: buying aQuantive, an online-advertising company, for $6 billion.
Gates and company are now looking at China as their largest market, with their own five-year plan in China. With two-thirds of the revenues coming from outside the U.S., the key to Microsoft's growth plan is to stay global.