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Oracle Shares Rise as Q2 Beats Street Estimates

A rare beat after falling short three quarters in a row.

Shutterstock/Anatoliy Lukich

Oracle’s first quarter with CEOs Mark Hurd and Safra Catz at the helm is in the books, and the new era at the business software giant is off to a positive start.

Oracle shares rose after hours as the company reported second-quarter results that beat the expectations of analysts.

Oracle reported a per-share profit of 69 cents on sales of $9.6 billion. Analysts had expected a profit of 68 cents a share on revenue of $9.52 billion. It was a rare beat for Oracle, as its results have fallen short of the consensus view for the last three quarters.

Sales rose three percent, and earnings per share were flat year on year. The company said that it experienced a five percent headwind on earnings because of currency effects as the U.S. dollar strengthened versus global currencies.

Software and cloud revenue rose five percent to $7.3 billion. Hardware revenue rose one percent to $1.3 billion. New software licenses, the most closely watched barometer of Oracle’s performance, remain flat versus the year-ago period. Product support revenue grew six percent to $4.8 billion.

Another closely watched metric is cloud bookings, an indicator of future business on cloud software. Larry Ellison, Oracle’s founder, chairman and CTO, said in a statement that the company expects bookings for cloud software to reach $250 million by the fourth quarter, and to break the $1 billion mark by Oracle’s fiscal year 2016. The company has been navigating a transition toward selling its software on a subscription basis versus its traditional method of selling it “on-premise” or installed on the customers own hardware.

This was the first quarterly report at Oracle since Ellison stepped out of the CEO job to become CTO and promoted Hurd and Catz to CEO, a title they share and that formalized the working relationship that had evolved since Hurd joined the company in 2010.

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