Salesforce Soars, Apple Axed: Tech Winners & Losers
Salesforce.com reported non-GAAP earnings of 51 cents a share on $835 million in revenue, as its software and services continue to show strength. Subscription and support revenue rose 32% year over year to $785 million, while professional services and other revenue grew 31% to $49 million. Wall Street analysts were expecting profit of 40 cents a share.
"Salesforce.com had a spectacular finish to its fiscal year. We delivered more than $3 billion in revenue and constant currency revenue growth of 37%," said Marc Benioff, chairman and CEO, in a press release.
Full-year 2014 guidance was also better than anticipated. Salesforce said revenue for the full year, which starts Feb. 1, will be between $3.82 billion and $3.87 billion. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters are looking for $3.85 billion in revenue.
Analyst Kulbinder Garcha cut his earnings estimates on the company, but kept the "outperform" rating as he believes Apple will refresh its iPhone lineup in the second half of 2013 that will "return Apple to its growing ways." He now expects 30.6 million iPhones to be sold in the second quarter of 2013, due in large part to a mid-2013 iPhone refresh, which may cause some hesitancy on consumers.
There are rumors that Apple will release the iPhone 5S sometime around mid-year, though nothing has been confirmed at this point.
Activist hedge fund investor David Einhorn also dropped his lawsuit against the company, following a victory in court over a proposal to issue preferred stock.
Mason was removed as Groupon's CEO, effectively immediately, following the company's poor fourth-quarter results. He was replaced by Executive Chairman Eric Lefkofsky and Vice Chairman Ted Leonsis in the interim, while Groupon searches for a new CEO.
Mason put out a letter to employees, showing his quirky side, but taking responsibility for some of the gaffe's Groupon has experienced as a public company.
"After four and a half intense and wonderful years as CEO of Groupon, I've decided that I'd like to spend more time with my family. Just kidding -- I was fired today," the letter read. "If you're wondering why ... you haven't been paying attention. From controversial metrics in our S1 to our material weakness to two quarters of missing our own expectations and a stock price that's hovering around one quarter of our listing price, the events of the last year and a half speak for themselves. As CEO, I am accountable."