Oracle’s profit soars 78%


Chart: CNNMoney

Shares of Oracle slipped slightly after hours, despite an announcement on Thursday afternoon that earnings grew by 78% and sales rose 37% in the previous quarter.

The Redwood City, Calif.-based enterprise software giant cited several large hardware and software wins during its fiscal third quarter for the company’s strong performance. One of the more notable deals includes a multi-year contract with to build most of their cloud services on top of Oracle’s database and middleware software.

"Oracle is the technology that powers the cloud," said CEO Larry Ellison, in a statement announcing the deal.

Net income rose to $2.1 billion last quarter from $1.2 billion a year ago. Excluding one-time charges, the company said it earned $2.8 billion, or 54 cents per share. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters forecast per-share earnings of 50 cents.

Revenue climbed to $8.8 billion, up from $6.4 billion last year. Wall Street expected sales of $8.7 billion.

Oracle also announced that it raised its dividend by a penny to 6 cents per share.

Co-President Safra Catz noted in a prepared statement that the company believes it will exceed the $1.5 billion profit goal it set for the Sun Microsystems business in the current fiscal year, which ends in May. Oracle completed its $7 billion acquisition of the server maker and Java owner early last year. -David