Despite warnings, EMC results still strong

Information storage titan EMC reported strong first-quarter earnings on Thursday, ringing in 20 per cent growth in both net income and diluted earnings per share, and a 29 per cent jump in consolidated revenue over the same period last year.

Net income came in at US$399 million, and earnings per share tallied $0.18, on target with a First Call/Thomson Financial survey of 24 analysts. Consolidated revenue grew to $2.34 billion, spurred by a 158 per cent year-on-year revenue growth in networked information storage.

The storage leader's gains, which arrived amid an overall chorus of IT industry first-quarter woes, reflect heightened business awareness that information consolidation improves efficiency, the company said upon release of the results.

Despite the strong showing, EMC's results did come in lower than originally anticipated, causing the company to fire two warning flares earlier this quarter. The company first shook investors in late February when it said that the uncertain U.S. economic climate could nip at its yearly revenue by as much as $1 billion. EMC's revenue goal for 2001 was $12 billion.

First-quarter jitters hit again April 11 when the company warned that earnings were expected to come in at close to $394 million, 10 per cent less than analysts were expecting.

Although the figures are lower than originally hoped, company officials say they believe that the company is staying in the black because it is providing a service that is of particular need during the economic slump.

Information storage is one of the fastest growing segments of IT because companies require simple and cost-effective management of their information, EMC President and Chief Executive Officer Joe Tucci said in a statement released Thursday.

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