Earnings Results: Salesforce shares wobbly as results, outlook top Street view

Salesforce.com Inc. shares fluctuated between slight gains and losses in the extended session Wednesday after the customer-relations software management company’s quarterly results and outlook topped Wall Street views.

Salesforce CRM, -0.19%  shares, which had been up as much as 2% after the release of earnings, were last down 0.2% after hours. Shares hit an all-time intraday high of $118.09 Wednesday but closed down 0.2% at $116.25.

The company reported fourth-quarter net income of $67.6 million, or 9 cents a share, compared with a loss of $51.4 million, or 7 cents a share, in the year-ago period. Adjusted earnings were 35 cents a share. Of the 39 analysts surveyed by FactSet, Salesforce on average was expected to post adjusted earnings of 34 cents a share. Salesforce had forecast 32 cents to 33 cents a share.

Revenue rose to $2.85 billion from $2.29 billion in the year-ago period. Wall Street had forecast revenue of $2.81 billion, according to 37 analysts polled by FactSet. Salesforce had predicted revenue of $2.8 billion to $2.81 billion.

Salesforce estimates adjusted earnings of 43 cents to 44 cents a share on revenue of $2.93 billion to $2.94 billion for the first quarter, and $2.02 to $2.04 a share on revenue of $12.6 billion to $12.7 billion for the year. Analysts expect earnings of 37 cents a share on revenue of $2.9 billion for the first quarter, and $1.74 a share on revenue of $12.54 billion for the year.

Salesforce said deferred revenue rose 28% to $7.09 billion, and that unbilled deferred revenue — business that is contracted but has not been billed yet — rose 48% from a year ago to $13.3 billion.

Of the 44 analysts who cover Salesforce, 39 have buy or overweight ratings, four have hold ratings and one has an underweight rating, with an average price target of $125.27, about 6% higher than its record high on Wednesday.

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