Canadian IT software provider Cognos Inc. yesterday reported higher-than-expected Q4 EPS as revenue grew 12.4%, but the company's shares lost about 5% in AH trading on lower-than-expected guidance for Q1 earnings. Cognos earned $60.9 million ($0.67/share) in the quarter, up from $39.3 million ($0.43/share) in the same period last year. Revenue came in at $284.50 million, ahead of Street expectations of $278.1 million. Excluding charges, Cognos reported a profit of $66.9 million ($0.74/share) versus $45.2 million ($0.49) last year, again beating analyst expectations of $0.65. For Q1 2007, however, Cognos is projecting EPS of $0.19-0.24, or $0.28-0.33 excluding items. Revenue is forecast in the $230-240 million range, representing growth of 6-11%. Analysts were projecting Q1 EPS of $0.37 on $239.5 million in sales. Rumors continue to circulate that IBM might make an offer for Cognos, but neither company is commenting on the speculation.
Sources: Chron.com, Reuters, TheStreet.com. Conference call transcripts: F4Q07 (Qtr End 2/28/07)
Commentary: Cognos: Takeover Speculation Could Intensify; F4Q Results Today • Oracle Buying Hyperion: Bad News for Business Objects, Cognos, SAP
Stocks/ETFs to watch: Cognos Inc. (COGN), International Business Machines (NYSE:IBM). Competitors: Oracle Corp. (NYSE:ORCL), Hyperion Solutions Corp. (HYSL), Business Objects SA (BOBJ). ETFs: Software HOLDRs (NYSE:SWH), Vanguard Information Technology ETF (NYSEARCA:VGT)
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