BEA Systems: On the Hunt for Acquisitions

| About: BEA Systems (BEAS)

BEA Systems (BEAS) held an analyst day in San Francisco Tuesday, which triggered the usual flurry of Street research. Not too many people walked away from the event with dramatically new information about the company; I didn’t see anyone change a rating on the stock.

One thing that people did pick up on, though, was a comment from CEO Alfred Chuang that the company is open to making acquisitions to consolidate market share.

Denny Fish, an analyst at JMP Securities, asserts that Tibco (NASDAQ:TIBX) and WebMethods (WEBM) would apparently fit BEA’s criteria, which include companies that either fit with the company’s AquaLogic product or which would provide better positioning in specific market segments, such as the front office of financial institutions.

Meanwhile, Robert Breza, an analyst at RBC Capital, trimmed his price target on BEA yesterday to $13 from $14, asserting that he sees “limited near-term catalysts as operating margins continue to face pressure and license revenue growth remains elusive at less than 5%” year over year.

David Hilal, of Friedman, Billings, Ramsey
, adds that the company’s guidance for the quarter implies flat year-over-year license growth, lower than his previous expectations. He maintains a Market Perform rating on the stock.

Robert Stimson, analyst at W.R. Hambrecht
, is more upbeat: he says current Street estimates for the January 2008 fiscal year of 62 cents a share are too low by 2-3 cents; he maintains a Buy rating on the stock.

But the talk of potentially significant acquisitions seemed to be weighing on the shares a bit yesterday; BEA was down four cents at $11.59.

BEAS 1-yr chart
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