Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Lawson upbeat on Q1 forecast

Well, maybe Harry Debes was right. Back in January, Lawson's CEO wrote me to say that his firm's financial performance was better than observers were giving it credit for.

Now, in forecasting its first quarter earnings, Lawson said today that it expects Q1 revenue to come in at $190 to $192 million, well above its previous forecast of $181 to $190 million. After the announcement, Lawson's share price peaked at its highest point since March 2004, finishing the day about 10% higher that the previous day's close.

Lawson is still digesting its 2005 acquisition of Intentia, and related costs are still impacting financial performance. From an accounting perspective, organizational perspective, and technical perspective, I have a feeling that the merger job was bigger than Lawson expected. Hopefully, Lawson can put that work behind it and move on to build even more momentum. Although I wasn't able to attend Lawson's user conference down the road in San Diego this year, I did hear about some good things, including a tighter reliance on IBM for Lawson's technical architecture, which frees up Lawson's resources to focus on business applications.

It will be interesting to see the details behind Lawson's performance when the final numbers come in. I'll be looking to see whether the results are due to a pick up in new deals or a change in the rate of deferred license revenue, which Debes explained in his correspondence to me in January. If Lawson's new deal flow is picking up, it would be a good sign not only for Lawson but for the enterprise system market in general. Lawson's results would be consistent with Oracle's most recent quarter, which were outstanding, and contrary to SAP's, which were weak.

We'll have to wait until April 9 to find out, however. Lawson announced yesterday that it is delaying its quarterly report because of a need to review restructuring charges from the Intentia acquisition.

Related posts
Lawson's performance better than it appears: CEO
Did Oracle just drain its pipeline?
SAP license sales grow, but short of target
Lawson acquiring Intentia

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