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Oracle Stock Rises on Strong Earnings

Oracle revenue rose 18% in its latest quarter.

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Brent Lewin/Bloomberg

Oracle
shares were moving higher late Monday after the company posted better-than-expected financial results for its latest quarter. The enterprise software giant continued to see success in shifting more of its business to the cloud during the period.

“Simply put, we had an outstanding quarter,” Oracle CEO Safra Catz said on a call with analysts. “More and more customers are recognizing our second generation infrastructure cloud as being better architected for higher performance, better security and unmatched reliability” than other cloud providers.

For the fiscal second quarter ended Nov. 30, Oracle (ticker: ORCL) posted revenue of $12.28 billion, up 18% from a year ago, or 25% adjusted for currency. The company had projected growth in the 15% to 17% range as reported, or 21% to 23% adjusted for currency. Growth excluding the company’s acquisition of the healthcare software company Cerner was 9% adjusted for currency, accelerating slightly from the fiscal first quarter.

Oracle noted that revenue in the quarter was more than $200 million ahead of the company’s own expectations.

On an adjusted basis, Oracle earned $1.21 a share in the quarter, 3 cents ahead of the Wall Street consensus. Under generally accepted accounting principles, the company earned 63 cents a share. Oracle said that earnings adjusted for currency would have been 9 cents a share higher.

The company said its infrastructure cloud business grew 53%, or 59% on a currency-adjusted basis in the quarter, while cloud-based applications grew 40%, or 45% after adjusting for currency. Overall cloud revenue in the November quarter reached $3.8 billion, up 43%, or 48% adjusted for currency.

Last week, Oracle’s cloud business got a major win, as one of four companies included in the Pentagon’s $9 billion cloud computing project called the Joint Warfighting Cloud Capability, along with
Amazon,

Microsoft,
and
Alphabet.
The Defense Department had originally said that only Amazon and Microsoft had the capabilities to meet its requirements, but ultimately included all four cloud vendors in the project.

Oracle said revenue from Fusion Cloud ERP, the company’s cloud-based financial application suite for large companies, was $600 million, up 23%, or 28% in constant currency. NetSuite Cloud ERP revenue was also $600 million, up 25%, or 29% adjusted for currency.

Oracle saw better-than-expected results in all business segments, including 11% growth in hardware, or 15% adjusted for currency, and 74% growth in services, or 83% growth on a currency adjusted basis. Services of $1.4 billion were about $400 million better than Wall Street estimates.

For the fiscal third quarter ending in February, Oracle CEO Safra Catz is projecting revenue growth of 21% to 23% adjusted for currency, and including the acquisition of Cerner, or between 17% and 19% as reported. That implies revenue of $12.4 billion, ahead of the Street consensus at $12.2 billion.

The company sees total cloud growth, including Cerner, of between 46% and 50% adjusted for currency. Oracle sees profits in the quarter of between $1.17 and $1.21 a share, at the midpoint of the range a little shy of the Street consensus at $1.25 a share, or between $1.23 to $1.27 a share adjusted for currency.

Catz said fiscal 2023 organic cloud growth will be more than 30% adjusted for currency. She also said that remaining performance obligations reached $61.2 billion, up 68% including Cerner and in constant currency; excluding Cerner, the total increased 28%, up from 22% in the August quarter.

Catz said that currency at current exchange rates will reduce top-line growth by four percentage points, and profits by at least six cents a share.

Oracle bought back $488 million of common stock in the latest quarter.

In late trading, Oracle shares are up 2%, to $82.62.

Write to Eric J. Savitz at eric.savitz@barrons.com

Credit: marketwatch.com

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