"Wall Street financial analysts are not renowned for being very
kind about results, but during Sun's analyst call last night for
its Q4 results, their praise was unprecedented in our experience.
"Breathtaking numbers" was the commonest comment, with "an
unbelievable quarter" and "spectacular" being runners up. So what
had excited these dour destroyers of many a promising company?"
"Sun's revenue for Q4 broke the $5 billion barrier for the first
time, and was up 42 per cent on the year-earlier quarter. Net
income was $720 million, up 82 per cent, with earnings per share up
75 per cent to 42 cents, which was 27 per cent better than what the
Street was expecting. There was in fact income of $96 million from
the sale of investments that mellows this result somewhat. Revenue
was up in all geographies for the quarter, compared with the year
earlier quarters, and for the financial year as a whole. Revenue
has increased through the financial year, with the quarters showing
growth of 25 per cent, 27 per cent, 36 per cent and 42 per cent
(excluding exceptional items)."
"...Sun has also managed to reach a friendly accommodation
with Linux, which it dubs "another Unix." Sun has Linux extensions
in Solaris, as well as a version of StarOffice for Linux. It
is beginning to look as though StarOffice will achieve the
distribution by OEMs that WordPerfect has failed to achieve in
recent years, judging by the list of OEMs that Sun said would be
taking it. This is somewhat strange since there is so little user
experience with StarOffice compared with WordPerfect (Editor's
note: Graham Lea = WordPerfect Die-Hard)."
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