EMC reports 25 percent jump in Q4 revenue

Data storage vendor EMC on Thursday announced its fourth-quarter and final fiscal 2003 earnings, saying its expanded product line and strong execution yielded a 25 percent revenue increase year over year for the quarter and a 15 percent jump in revenue for the full fiscal year.

"The storage recession is over," said Tom Lahize, an analyst at Enterprise Storage Group Inc. in Milford, Massachusetts.

EMC said its consolidated revenue for fiscal 2003 was US$6.24 billion, up from $5.44 billion in 2002. Net income for fiscal 2003 was $496 million, compared with a net loss of $119 million in 2002. The Hopkinton, Massachusetts-based company said its total consolidated revenue for the fourth quarter was $1.86 billion, compared with $1.49 billion in the fourth quarter of 2002.

EMC President and CEO Joe Tucci said in a statement that the company's new information life-cycle management strategy is "being well received by both long-standing and new customers who are grappling with the challenges of compliance, information protection and constrained budgets."

Information life-cycle management refers to the policy-based, automated management of data from creation to deletion.

EMC reported revenue growth across all of its major businesses in the just-completed quarter, including its high-end Symmetrix, Clariion and Centera array lines and its software and services. It said software sales resulting from its recent acquisitions of Legato Systems Inc. and Documentum Inc. were in the double digits sequentially compared with the third quarter of 2003.

Net income for the fourth quarter was $220 million, which included some tax benefits that were partially offset by restructuring and other special charges primarily related to the Legato and Documentum acquisitions. In comparison, EMC reported a $64 million net income loss in the fourth quarter of 2002.

Lahize pointed to EMC's performance in sales through resellers, particularly its partner Dell Inc., which took over sales of EMC's Clariion storage server line two years ago. Dell accounted for almost 50 percent of sales for EMC's midrange storage server.

"Dell is just an awesome partner for EMC," Lahize said. "Two or three years ago, resellers hated doing business with EMC. They had a reputation of stepping around them. Their sales strategy has clearly changed."