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Autodesk Posts Weak Q1 Guidance Amid Cloud Transition, Q4 Beats

#autodesk #businessLongtime product-design software stalwart Autodesk (ADSK), amid a major transition to cloud computing, late Thursday gave Q1 guidance that missed Wall Street views, but its Q4 results beat.

Autodesk’s transition into a cloud software vendor is progressing, and shares hit a record high Wednesday, but its weak guidance sent the stock down late Thursday.

Shares weren’t slowed by last month’s surprise announcement that 11-year Chief Executive Carl Bass was resigning, with no new CEO yet appointed as the company undergoes a search. Bass remains a special advisor and board member, however, and he was praised heartily by the company in the announcement — praise echoed by analysts. The same day, Autodesk announced that two representatives of activist investor Sachem Head Capital Management, Scott Ferguson and Jeff Clarke, would resign from the board this year.

The computer-aided design arena that Autodesk has long led has been a slower convert to cloud computing, but the company has been picking up steam in its conversion.

Wall Street Q4, Q1 estimates: Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expect Autodesk to swing to a per-share loss minus items of 34 cents from a 21-cent profit in the year-earlier quarter. Revenue for the period ended Jan. 31 is expected to rise 27% to $473.55 million. For its first quarter, analysts see a 13-cent loss, vs. a 10-cent loss in the year-ago quarter, on sales of $496.65 million, down 3%.

Q4 results, Q1 guidance: The company posted a per-share loss minus items of 28 cents, as revenue rose 26% to $479 million. But for Q1, it guided to a per-share loss ex items of 21 cents to 27 cents, on revenue of $460 million to $480 million.

Prior quarter: Three months ago, Autodesk posted an adjusted loss of 18 cents a share, swinging from a 14-cent profit. Revenue fell 18% to $490 million. But it marked the company’s first quarter of selling only subscriptions, as opposed to on-premise licenses. In the new model, revenue is recognized gradually rather than upfront. The company said that its subscription accounts under the new model rose by 168,000 from the fiscal second quarter, to 861,000 total. It said that its new model annualized recurring revenue, which rose 88% year over year, to $414 million.

Company Q4 guidance: The San Rafael-Calif.-based software maker guided to a per-share loss ex items of 32 cents to 39 cents, on revenue of $460 million to $480 million.

Stock: Autodesk stock was down more than 2% in after-hours trading Thursday, following its earnings release. Shares fell 1.8% to 87.32 in the regular session, after rising 3.1% Wednesday and touching an all-time high of 89.18. At that point, it had hit a record high in three of the past four trading days. Shares broke out of a cup base at 83.18 on Jan. 25 and so are just a bit more than 5% extended.

Source : investors

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