E.piphany scores, but Sybase slumps

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In the week that market leader Siebel is set to report a massive drop in licence revenues, rival CRM vendor E.piphany boosted its revenues slightly and cut its losses substantially for the first quarter of 2003.

The company vreported a net loss of $10.9 million on revenue of $22.5 million, compared to a quarterly net loss of $17.0 million on revenue of $22.1 million last year. Services made up the bulk of revenue in the first quarter, generating $12.1 million, or 54 per cent of all revenue. Licence revenue generated $10.4 million, or 46 per cent of the total revenue.

Roger Siboni, president and chief executive officer, commented, "I am pleased with our execution this quarter, especially in light of the world situation and the general spending environment in the enterprise software sector.

Meanwhile Sybase has reported revenues of $181.6 million for the first quarter of 2003, a 14 per cent decline in year-ago revenues of $211 million. Pro forma net income for the quarter was $16.1 million, versus $21.2 million for the year-ago quarter.

Sybase President and CEO John Chen admitted that earnings were $20 million short of what the company had expected, blaming two-thirds of the shortfall on licensing shortfalls and the rest on losses in consulting services and education.

He added that deal closures were slowing down as well. "Nearly all big deals in telecommunications got pushed out in North America," Chen said. “[Economic instability] eliminates near-term incentive for making purchases. Notwithstanding the difficult global economy, we were able to maintain a stable operating margin. We're bullish on our future."

More positively, the company's acquisition of AvantGo last quarter means that Sybase now owns and operates the world's largest mobile portal, with over 8 million subscribers

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