Oracle's new software, cloud revenue dropped 2 percent in Q3

Revenue from new business is important because it helps indicate future growth

Oracle's total revenue dipped 1 percent and profits remained almost flat in its most recent quarter, as revenue from new software licenses and cloud services dropped by 2 percent.

Revenue for the December to February period was US$9 billion while net profit was $2.5 billion, the company said Wednesday.

The 2 percent drop in new software licensing and cloud software subscriptions pushed revenue in that business sector to $2.3 billion.

The amount of money Oracle makes from new licensing is watched closely because it helps indicate future growth. New licensing agreements and subscriptions usually lead to ongoing sales and support contracts that are lucrative for the company.

The license update and support business was almost twice the size of new business in the quarter. It saw revenue of $4.3 billion, up 7 percent on the same period in 2012.

Offsetting the healthy jump in support revenue, Oracle said its hardware products business suffered a 23 percent drop in revenue while its hardware support business fell 6 percent.

(More to follow.)

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