Cognos Boosts Earnings Forecast

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Underscoring the growth of business-intelligence (BI) software and corporate performance management (CPM) applications, Cognos on Wednesday said revenue for its fiscal quarter ended May 31 increased 15 percent, totaling $174 million, and profits were up 62 percent, or $20.1 million.

Cognos, a leading BI player, also slightly raised its revenue forecast for its second fiscal quarter of 2005 from $180 million to $182 million. In addition, the company revised its forecast for the entire year by $5 million totaling $775 million. CPM, the use of balanced scorecards or dashboards to measure the performance of a business unit, geography or workgroup, is clearly on the rise and is driving investments in core BI and analytic software.

"We increasingly see CPM as a natural evolution of our conversation with customers, around the discrete enterprise planning and business intelligence agendas," said Robert Ashe, Cognos' president and COO who officially becomes CEO on Monday. Ashe replaces longtime CEO Ron Zambonini, who now is chairman. Clearly, Ashe is looking to see Cognos reach the $1 billion revenue mark in short order.

"My vision for Cognos is clear: to be the leading enterprise software company for CPM solutions," he said. "Based on a foundation of leadership and BI and planning, we will help our customers deliver end-to-end decision-making systems that provide a complete view of their organization on any time horizons. All the trends we see in the market continue to point toward this being a significant market opportunity."

License revenue alone for BI software is forecast to reach $2 billion this year, according to Gartner. Services revenue including consulting, application development, systems integration, deployment, product support and managed services will total nearly $7 billion this year, and grow to $8 billion by 2006.

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