* Expects margin improvement in fiscal 2011
* Shares up 5.6 pct
(Adds CEO comment, updates shares)
By Ian Sherr
SAN FRANCISCO, Feb 23 Autodesk Inc (ADSK.O)
posted better-than-expected quarterly results as corporate
budgets loosened and demand improved for its design software.
The company, which makes the AutoCAD design software for
architects and designers, also said it expected its operating
margin, excluding items, to increase "significantly" in fiscal
2011 over 2010.
Autodesk reported net income of $50.1 million, or 21 cents
a share, in its fiscal fourth quarter ended Jan. 31, after a
year ago net loss of $105.30 million, or 47 cents.
Excluding items, Autodesk earned 30 cents a share, beating
the average analyst estimate of 23 cents a share, according to
Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Net revenue including licensing and maintenance fell to
$456.1 million from $489.8 million the previous year, but came
in above the Wall Street target of $432 million.
Autodesk shares rose 5.6 percent in after-hours trading.
Analysts said Autodesk is well placed to increase revenue
in 2010 because of its international scope and an expected
resurgence in spending by corporations.
Many of the company's customers appeared to be upgrading
their software, bringing higher revenue and margins, analysts
Executives said many of Autodesk's manufacturing customers
in particular were running older systems.
"We were very successful in either wholesale replacements
or getting pilots in, in order to replace those old expensive
systems," Chief Executive Carl Bass told analysts on a
Bass said his company was also eyeing expansion in emerging
markets, where existing relationships are helping to grow
"Autodesk is well positioned in the market to see growth
even in a relatively flat economic environment because of its
worldwide footprint," said Longbow Research analyst Steve
Autodesk forecast revenue for the current quarter of $420
million to $440 million, with earnings per share excluding
items of 18 cents to 23 cents. Wall Street expects
current-quarter earnings of 20 cents on revenue of $429.53
The San Rafael-based company's shares closed at $25.66 on
Nasdaq and rose to $27.10 in extended trading.
(Reporting by Ian Sherr; Editing by Richard Chang and Carol