VMware buying Nicira
Business software maker VMware is buying computer networking specialist Nicira for nearly US$1.3 billion. The deal announced on Monday will expand VMware’s product line in the rapidly growing field of computer “virtualization.” The term refers to software that lowers the costs of running data centers by enabling a single computer to function like multiple machines. VMware also reported a 13 percent decline in its second-quarter earnings to US$191.7 million, or US$0.44 per share, from US$220.2 million, or US$0.51 per share a year earlier. Revenue for the period climbed 22 percent from last year to US$1.12 billion to match analyst projections. VMware expects its revenue for the current quarter to range from US$1.11 billion to US$1.15 billion
SAP’s profits rise 18%
German software giant SAP said yesterday that bottom-line profits grew sharply in the second quarter of this year as software sales topped record levels. SAP said in a statement its net profit rose by 18 percent to 831 million euros (US$1 billion) in the period from April to June. Operating profit grew by 15 percent to 1.173 billion euros on an 18 percent increase in revenues to 3.916 billion euros. Software revenues were up 26 percent at 1.059 billion euros, while support revenues increased by 15 percent to 2.014 billion euros, the statement said. Looking ahead to the full year, the software maker said it was sticking to its target for operating profit of 5.05 billion to 5.25 billion euros, compared with 4.71 billion euros last year.
STMicro lowers forecast
STMicroelectronics NV, Europe’s largest chipmaker, forecast third-quarter revenue will grow by about 2.5 percent from the previous period, indicating sales may miss analysts’ estimates amid weaker demand. Sales for the three months ending Sept. 29 will increase in the range of 2.5 percent, plus or minus 3 percentage points, the company said on Monday. At the midpoint of the forecast, revenue would be US$2.2 billion, missing the average analyst estimate of US$2.31 billion, according to data complied by Bloomberg. Second-quarter sales rose 6.5 percent from the first quarter. Chief executive officer Carlo Bozotti said in a conference call the company had weaker bookings in the last part of the second quarter and the trend has continued at the beginning of this month.
Apple loses Galaxy-ban bid
Apple Inc lost a Dusseldorf appeals court bid to ban sales of Samsung Electronics Co’s Galaxy 10.1N tablet computer, a modified version of the device introduced after the original tablet was blocked in Germany. The appeals court judges backed a lower-court ruling that had rejected the bid in February. The court granted a separate bid to extent a German ban of Samsung’s Galaxy 7.7 tablet to apply in all member states of the EU.
Rosneft eyes BP’s share
Russian state-controlled oil company Rosneft has signaled its interest in acquiring BP’s share in its Russian joint venture TNK-BP. Rosneft said in a statement yesterday that it has informed BP of its interest in acquiring its stake in the firm. TNK-BP, Russia’s third-largest oil producer, is owned on a 50-50 basis by BP and AAR, a consortium of Russian billionaire shareholders. AAR last week indicated interest in buying out BP. A 50 percent stake in TNK-BP could be worth about US$18 billion, according to the company’s market valuation.