Novell Posts Higher Fourth-Quarter Profits, Sales



Novell posted stronger sales and sharply higher profits for its fiscal fourth quarter, which ended Oct. 31. For the full fiscal year, sales also rose, and the networking company turned a profit compared with its year-earlier loss.

Fourth-quarter revenue was $298 million, up 11% from $269 million the year earlier. Net income totaled $42 million, a fivefold increase from the marginal $7 million profit posted in the year-earlier period. Per-share net income came in at 12 cents, fully diluted, compared with 2 cents last year.

For the year, sales were $1.08 billion, up 8% from $1.01 billion in the fiscal year ended Oct. 31, 1997. Novell posted a profit of $102 million, compared with a loss of $78 million last year. Per-share profit was 29 cents, compared with a 22-cent loss the year earlier. The year-earlier results include a restructuring charge of $55 million, or 10 cents a share.

Novell's healthy fourth-quarter results reflected high sales to customers deploying large networks, including Novell Directory Services software, the company says. Major account license programs were up 53% in the quarter from the year earlier, to $152 million.

The balance sheet stayed strong. Cash and short-term investments totaled $1.01 billion, compared with $1.03 billion at the end of fiscal 1997.

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