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BEA Sales Up 11 Percent For First Quarter

BEA Systems Thursday posted solid first-quarter results for fiscal 2005, meeting Wall Street earnings estimates and growing its sales 11 percent year over year.

For the first quarter ended April 30, BEA, San Jose, Calif., reported pro forma net income of $33.5 million, or 8 cents per share, on sales of $262.6 million. Estimates from Thomson Financial/First Call predicted BEA would earn 8 cents per share for the quarter. For the same time period last year, BEA earned $24.5 million on sales of $237.3 million.

Despite a strong quarter, pressure from chief competitor IBM seemed evident in BEA's results. The company's license revenue of $120.2 million was down 2 percent from $122.3 million a year ago. New analyst figures from Gartner and IDC in published reports this week showed that in 2003 IBM widened its lead over BEA in the vendor's core business, the application server market, though BEA is making some gains in the integration software space. In line with those estimates, BEA reported 15 percent year-over-year license revenue growth for WebLogic Integration in the first quarter, according to BEA Chairman, CEO and President Alfred Chuang.

Chuang also said in a conference call with analysts Thursday that sales in the Americas, which comprised 48 percent of first-quarter revenue, did not meet BEA's performance plan for the quarter. The figure usually hovers above 50 percent.

Chuang attributed this lack of execution to sales organization restructuring, including a new regional coverage model for midsize-business customers, which disrupted sales in the quarter. Chuang said BEA Executive Vice President of Worldwide Sales Charlie Ill will direct U.S. sales for the time being as a result of the disruption. Alan Fudge, senior vice president of Americas sales for BEA, has left the company to pursue other opportunities, according to Chuang.

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