Nuance Communications, Inc.NASDAQ
Tue, Feb. 9, 4:50 PM
- With an FQ1 beat in tow, Nuance (NASDAQ:NUAN) is hiking its FY16 (ends Sep. '16) EPS guidance to $1.41-$1.51 from $1.35-$1.45; consensus is at $1.43. Revenue guidance of $1.98B-$2.03B is reiterated.
- FQ2 guidance is in-line: Revenue of $483M-$497M and EPS of $0.33-$0.36 vs. a consensus of $493.5M and $0.34.
- Bookings: Net new bookings rose 2% Y/Y in FQ1 to $308.7M. On-demand and maintenance/support contract growth led the deferred revenue balance to rise 18% to $732.7M. FY16 net new bookings growth guidance of 2%-5% is reiterated.
Financials: Lifting EPS: $188.7M was spent to buy back 8.9M shares at an average price of $21.11. Also helping: Cost cuts led GAAP operating expenses to drop 11% Y/Y to $248.7M - non-GAAP op. margin rose to 28.6% from 22% a year ago.
Nuance ended FQ1 with $595M in cash/investments and $2.12B in debt. The company's FY16 net cash tax rate guidance has been lowered to 5%-6% from 6%-7%.
- NUAN -1.5% after hours to $15.92.
- Nuance's FQ1 results, earnings release, prepared remarks (.pdf)
- Update (5:10PM ET): Nuance is now up 5.5% after hours to $17.30.
Tue, Feb. 9, 4:04 PM
- Nuance Communications (NASDAQ:NUAN): FQ1 EPS of $0.36 beats by $0.03.
- Revenue of $494.87M (+1.2% Y/Y) beats by $3.41M.
- Shares +0.15%.
Mon, Feb. 8, 5:35 PM
Wed, Feb. 3, 9:21 AM
- SwiftKey's iOS/Android keyboard apps have over 300M users - a Samsung pre-install deal has helped - and are declared to have "saved nearly 10 trillion keystrokes, across 100 languages" with the help of A.I. that learns a user's typing tendencies to predict his/her next word. They also feature an autocorrect tool that adapts to a user's writing style, and an option to type by swiping from letter to letter.
- Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) is buying SwiftKey for an undisclosed sum; the FT reports the acquisition price is $250M. With SwiftKey based in London, offshore cash is likely being used.
- Microsoft: "We’ll continue to develop SwiftKey’s market-leading keyboard apps for Android and iOS as well as explore scenarios for the integration of the core technology across the breadth of our product and services portfolio. Moreover, SwiftKey’s predictive technology aligns with Microsoft’s investments and ambition to develop intelligent systems that can work more on the user’s behalf and under their control." The company adds SwiftKey will be integrated with its Word Flow touch keyboard.
- The purchase is the latest in a string of Microsoft acquisitions of iOS/Android productivity apps. Others include Wunderlist (to-do lists), Accompli (e-mail), and Sunrise (calendars). Nuance's (NASDAQ:NUAN) Swype is a notable SwiftKey rival.
Mon, Jan. 25, 5:41 PM
Mon, Jan. 4, 7:09 PM
- Ahead of CES (runs from Jan. 6-9), Nuance (NASDAQ:NUAN) discloses its Dragon Drive voice recognition/personal assistant platform has been designed into the infotainment systems within 2015 and 2016 BMW models. The company disclosed design wins with Mercedes in September.
- Nuance adds BMW's 7-series cars have been the first to support a "conversational" UI that leverages natural language assistance (NLU), text-to-speech functionality, and a mixture of embedded and cloud-based voice recognition. The NLU capabilities leverage neural networking, and an "intelligent arbitration algorithm" decides whether to rely on embedded or cloud voice recognition.
- Nuance: "Drivers are able to say commands in one phrase, such as Send a text message to Joe, I am stuck in traffic and will be 15 minutes late, or Get me directions to Armando's Pizza in Cambridge. Drivers can also speak over or interrupt the system to complete tasks faster." Google and Apple, of course, have been working to add similar functionality to Google Now and Siri.
- Last month: Nuance launches platform for adding voice recognition to apps, IoT devices
Dec. 15, 2015, 11:48 PM
- Unlike its Dragon Mobile Assistant solution, Nuance's (NASDAQ:NUAN) Mix developer platform doesn't try to directly compete with Siri, Google Now, or Cortana. Rather, it provides developers with SDKs that can be used to embed voice recognition and text-to-speech functionality into iOS/Android apps, smart home products, and IoT devices.
- Nuance: "Nuance Mix is unique in that it lets developers define their use cases, concepts and parameters, and the variety of ways consumers will interact with their device or app through voice ... Nuance's unique ability to deliver a complete stack with voice recognition, natural language, and text-to-speech offers developers unparalleled opportunities to optimize accuracy and create innovative end-to-end solutions." The company notes it already has 30K+ developers in its developer program, and supports 40+ launguages.
- As The Verge observes, Apple and Google could potentially compete with Mix by fully opening up Siri (believed to be Nuance-powered) and Google Now to 3rd-party developers. Aside from its historical voice recognition and text-to-speech expertise, Nuance is pitching developers on Mix's ability to create custom speech/natural language models for each developer, and to adapt its handling of voice commands based on what users say.
Dec. 2, 2015, 9:30 AM
- Nuance (NUAN +0.6%) is selling $588M worth of senior convertible debt sporting a 1% interest rate and a $27.22/share conversion price (27% above current levels).
- $472M of the net proceeds will be used to pay down credit facility loans. Remaining proceeds, along with cash on hand, will be used to buy back $180M worth of shares and to refinance other debt, including $38M worth of 2.75% convertible debt due 2031.
- The voice recognition software/services firm had $569M in cash at the end of calendar Q3, and over $2.1B in debt.
Nov. 17, 2015, 12:47 PM
Nov. 17, 2015, 9:16 AM
Nov. 16, 2015, 5:43 PM
Nov. 16, 2015, 4:44 PM
- Nuance (NASDAQ:NUAN) has guided in its earnings slides (.pdf) for FQ1 revenue of $486M-$498M and EPS of $0.31-$0.33 vs. a consensus of $490.6M and $0.31. FY16 (ends Sep. '16) guidance is for revenue of $1.98B-$2.03B and EPS of $1.35-$1.45 vs. a consensus of $2.01B and $1.38.
- Bookings: Nuance expects 2%-5% FY16 net new bookings growth, after having posted 4% growth in FY15 (at the high end of a prior 1%-4% guidance range). FQ4 net new bookings were up 9% Y/Y. The estimated 3-year value of on-demand contracts was at $2.3B at the end of FQ4 vs. $2.25B a year earlier. Thanks to the shift towards on-demand/subscription services, deferred revenue rose 22% Y/Y to $668.2M.
- FQ4 segment performance: Healthcare revenue +1% Y/Y to $241.2M. Mobile/consumer -1% to $121.8M. Enterprise -10% to $88.4M. Imaging -11% to $61.9M. The Dragon Medical voice recognition platform and Cllintegrity documentation software were strong points for healthcare, while transcription volume declined. Mobile/consumer benefited from automotive, consumer electronics, and mobile carrier growth, offset by mobile phone weakness and soft Dragon desktop demand.
- Financials: 68% of FQ4 revenue was recurring, and 23% from licenses. Boosting EPS: Operating expenses (non-GAAP) fell 12% Y/Y to $175.4M with the help of job cuts. $56.5M was spent on buybacks. Nuance ended FQ4 with $569M in cash, and over $2.1B in debt.
- Shares have jumped to $18.14 after hours.
- Nuance's FQ4 beat, PR
Nov. 16, 2015, 4:04 PM
- Nuance Communications (NASDAQ:NUAN): FQ4 EPS of $0.41 beats by $0.06.
- Revenue of $513.32M (-1.3% Y/Y) beats by $5.48M.
Nov. 15, 2015, 5:35 PM
Oct. 2, 2015, 6:41 PM
- Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has bought VocalIQ, a U.K.-based developer of a "self-learning dialogue platform" that developers and OEMs can use to create personal assistants that understand natural-language questions and commands.
- VocalIQ's technology, which could be used to help Siri better decipher conversational language, relies on A.I./machine learning to steadily improve its understanding of human dialogue. Notably, the auto market was a focus area for the company, with GM a partner.
- Google (Now) and Microsoft (Cortana) have also been making investments in natural-language processing driven by machine learning. Facebook, meanwhile, recently showed off an assistant (known as M) that relies on both machine learning and actual humans to provide answers.
- iOS 9 brought with it Apple's Proactive assistant, which uses both Siri and user data to push relevant content a la Google Now. This year has also seen the launch of the Siri-capable Apple Watch, and is set to see the rollout of an Apple TV set-top supporting Siri. Nuance (NASDAQ:NUAN) is believed to help power the platform.
Sep. 15, 2015, 2:06 PM
- Nuance's (NUAN +0.4%) Dragon Drive voice assistant platform will be used to power weather, Web radio, local search, and dictation apps and services in select Mercedes-Benz models starting this month. Additional models will be supported later.
- Nuance's voice recognition software is already integrated within Mercedes-Benz infotainment systems; the new deal adds cloud-based speech and natural language recognition. Other Dragon Drive clients include Chrysler, Ford, Toyota, and Hyundai.
- The news comes a day after Nuance announced a partnership with Rovi (ROVI +0.6%) to integrate its Dragon TV voice recognition platform with Rovi's cloud-based Conversation Services, which enable voice-based content searching and discovery.