Wall Street Beat: Software vendor results offer glimpses of optimism

Oracle and Tibco report quarterly financial results that were mixed, but more solid than last quarter

By , IDG News Service |  IT Management

Despite the tough economic climate over the past year, Tibco CEO Vivek Ranadivé has always maintained that the company can increase revenue and beat the competition, including giants like IBM, as long as its sales force executes on strategy.

"We saw further signs of operational improvement this quarter, as our focus on execution generated renewed growth in our infrastructure business," said Ranadivé, in a press release announcing the results. In a conference call, Ranadivé tried to drive the point home.

"We did not lose a single deal in the entire quarter," Ranadive said, according to a transcript of the call on Seeking Alpha.

Tibco shares closed up by $0.67 at $25.92 Friday.

Meanwhile, Adobe, whose Photoshop and Illustrator software target creative and marketing professionals, got a boost after announcing this week that it ended its fiscal quarter with an increase of 331,000 subscribers to its Creative Cloud cloud-based software service. It now has 1.3 million Creative Cloud subscribers.

"We exceeded 1 million subscriptions during Q3, demonstrating that the transition to Creative Cloud is happening sooner than expected," said CEO Shantanu Narayen.

Revenue, however, decreased from $1.1 billion to $995 million and net income declined from $201 million to $83 million.

Investors appeared to be cheered by the uptick in cloud users though, pushing up Adobe shares by $4.44 to $52.58 on Wednesday, a day after results were announced. Shares settled down to $52.31 Friday.

Outside of the software world, BlackBerry said Friday it would lay off 4,500 employees, or 40 percent of its staff, and reported a loss of about $1 billion, in a surprise early earnings announcement. The beleaguered smartphone maker's attempts this year to revamp its product line to compete with Apple's iPhone and phones based on Android have failed to lift results. It is exploring a sale of parts or all of the company. Shares declined by $1.82 to close at $8.70 Friday.

Overall, it was a down day on the markets Friday, as the Standard and Poor's 500 index declined by 12.43 points to close at 1709.91, the Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped by 185.46 points to close at 15,451.09 and the tech-heavy Nasdaq slumped by 14.66 points to close at 3774.73.

The declines appeared to have more to do with a comment by a Federal Reserve official than any particular company announcement, however.

St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank President James Bullard said on Bloomberg TV that trimming of the Fed's $85 billion monthly bond purchase program might be possible starting next month. The Fed's bond purchases are widely viewed as helping to prop up the stock market in the wake of the recession.

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