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Robin Washington, CFO of Hyperion Solutions Corp. (HYSL), presented yesterday to what sounded like a very small audience in London at the Morgan Stanley/Nasdaq investor conference. Washington claimed that Hyperion's primary position is as a business performance management software company, which strives to manage the process from setting goals to building models, planning, monitoring, analyzing and reporting.

Interestingly, the presentation dove right into financial metrics which is their heritage and what they are actually known for [as opposed to the broader category that they are claiming.] The release of Hyperion System 9 bundles several of their services into a single workspace and offers better integration between applications, business intelligence, data management and core services like single sign on. Again, the stress is really on the quality and management of financial data rather than other aspects of business or enterprise management.

From a competitive standpoint they showed the Gartner CPM [Corporate Performance Management] grid, pairing themselves off against Cognos (COGN) in the leaders quadrant. Hovering around them are SAP (NYSE:SAP), Oracle (NYSE:ORCL), SAS (SAS), Business Objects (BOBJ)and two upstarts, Cartesis and OutlookSoft. IDC puts their BPM market share at 19% versus 5-8% each for COGN, SAP, ORCL and SAS. They have the market size at $1.6B and growing about 12%. In query and reporting BOBJ and COGN lead with 18% and 13% respectively. HYSL thinks that they can improve their 6% share here.

Company revenues have reached $800M. ASP is $145K. Cash stands at $436M. Market capitalization today is $2.1B. They have 12,000 customers and 2,800 employees. Operating margins are 17-18%. CFOPS has been strong. Up from about $80M/year in FY04 to over $125M in FY05 and over $150M in FY06. They ave been buying back stock [$390M so far] and building cash levels. They have raised guidance recently to $860M and $1.70-5 of non-GAAP EPS. Management thinks they can get to $1B in revenues and 20% non-GAAP OM but doesn't say when. The company is also looking at M&A and has made a number of acquisitions to date including: Alcar [strategic finance], UpStream [financial data quality management], Brio [query and reporting], QiQ [dashboards], and Razza [master data management].

So, despite the rhetoric, they are a financial data management firm as they always have been. It’s not a criticism, just a reality.

HYSL 1-yr chart
HYSL 1 yr chart

Disclosure: Author has no position in HYSL.

Source: What is Hyperion's Focus?