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Cognos Reports Operating Loss In 1Q

Cognos Inc. reports operating loss of $2.1 million for first quarter.
Cognos Inc. on Thursday reported an operating loss of $2.1 million (2 cents per share) on sales of $108 million for its first quarter ended May 31. The results, which were in line with projections the vendor disclosed May 30, compared with net income of $12 million (13 cents per share) on sales of $108.7 million in the same period a year earlier.

On May 30, the business-intelligence software vendor laid off 300 employees, about 10% of its staff, in an effort to return to profitability. A $12.8 million pre-tax charge against earnings to cover the restructuring costs resulted in a net loss for the quarter of $11.1 million, or 13 cents per share. In a conference call with financial analysts, president and CEO Ron Zambonini said he expects the company to return to profitability this quarter with sales in the range of $116 million and earnings of 7 cents per share.

Analysts peppered Zambonini with questions about the business climate, searching for hints that an upturn is imminent. The CEO was cautiously confident, noting that the vendor's sales pipeline is reasonably full. But he said many orders are still being deferred or cut back in size. Said Zambonini, "We think market conditions right now are tough."