Palo Alto Networks 4Q beats expectations

AP News
Posted: Sep 10, 2012 7:24 PM
Palo Alto Networks 4Q beats expectations

SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) — Palo Alto Networks Inc., which went public in July, reported an adjusted fiscal fourth-quarter profit that beat market expectations as demand built for its security software.

The company, based in Santa Clara, Calif., posted a net loss of $4.6 million, or 18 cents per share, for the period that ended July 31. That's compared with a loss of $6 million, or 40 cents per share, in the same quarter last year. It earned 3 cents per share on an adjusted basis for the most recent period.

Palo Alto's revenue increased 88 percent to $75.6 million from $40.2 million. The company said it added more than 1,000 new customers during the period, bringing its total customer count to more than 9,000.

CEO Mark McLaughlin said the company is "clearly outpacing the market and demonstrating the power of our technology".

Palo Alto makes firewall technology that protects computer networks. The company says its customers are looking for new ways to protect their networks given an explosion in application use, social networking and cloud computing.

The quarter beat the expectations of analysts polled by FactSet, who forecast that Palo Alto would break even on an adjusted earnings per share basis with revenue of $71.3 million.

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However, the company's shares fell $6.87, or 9.6 percent, to $64.88, in after-hours trading following a run-up in price in the days preceding its first earnings report as a public company. The company's shares closed regular trading up $1.01 at $71.75 Monday.

Its stock price is up 70 percent from its IPO pricing of $42 per share.