Tata Consultancy profit rises 23 percent, beats estimate

BANGALORE Mon Jan 14, 2013 6:36am EST

BANGALORE Jan 14 (Reuters) - Tata Consultancy Services Ltd (TCS), India's No.1 software services exporter, joined rival Infosys Ltd in posting a stronger-than-expected 23 percent rise in quarterly profit, fuelling hopes of a broad pickup in tech spending.

Net profit rose to 35.52 billion rupees ($652 million) for the quarter ended December from 28.87 billion rupees a year earlier, TCS said on Monday. That compares with an average estimate of 32.43 billion rupees in a poll of 19 analysts, according to Thomson Reuters.

India's $100 billion IT services sector has been under pressure to stay profitable as clients in key markets including the United States and Europe maintain a cautious stance on tech spending due to the uncertain global economy.

Fuelling speculation the sector may be turning a corner, second-ranked Infosys Ltd on Friday raised its full-year revenue forecast after new clients and an acceleration in IT spending by existing customers helped the Bangalore-based company post a stronger-than-expected quarterly profit.

TCS, which does not provide detailed revenue forecasts, has maintained it expects to beat the industry's export revenue growth forecast set by the National Association of Software and Service Companies (NASSCOM).

In November, NASSCOM said the sector was likely to meet the lower end of its revenue growth outlook of 11-14 percent for the year ending in March.