January 28, 2008 / 10:04 PM / 12 years ago

UPDATE 1-VMware revenue misses forecasts, shares plunge

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BOSTON, Jan 28 (Reuters) - VMware Inc (VMW.N), the leading maker of virtualization software, reported quarterly revenues that fell short of Wall Street expectations on Monday, sending its shares plunging over 23 percent.

The company said net profit in the fourth quarter was 78 million, or 19 cents per share, compared to $31 million, or 9 cents per share, a year earlier. Revenue rose 80 percent to $412 million.

Analysts were on average were expecting VMware to report fourth-quarter revenue of $417 million and earnings excluding special items, such as stock-based compensation expense and amortization, of 24 cents per share.

VMware makes technology that allows a single computer to act like many “virtual” machines and run multiple operating systems and programs. It is the leading company in the virtualization market, but faces increasing competition from the likes of Oracle Corp ORCL.O and Microsoft Corp (MSFT.O).

Shares of VMware fell to $63.50 in extended trading from a close of $83 on the New York Stock Exchange.

The stock of VMware’s parent EMC Corp EMC.N fell over 10 percent in after-hours trade to $15.10 from a New York Stock Exchange close of $16.91. (Reporting by Jim Finkle; Editing by Tim Dobbyn)

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