SAP: Q4 revenue beats targets

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FRANKFURT (AP) — German business software maker SAP AG said Thursday its fourth quarter revenue dropped 9 percent to €3.18 billion ($4.61 billion), better than it was expecting.

The company, based in Walldorf, Germany, said in a preliminary earnings statement that its revenue for the quarter ended Dec. 31, 2009 compared with €3.49 billion the same period of 2008.

SAP said revenue from software dropped 16 percent to €1.11 billion from €1.32 billion in 2008, and that the overall operating profit margin was 32.8 percent, down 4 percentage points.

Despite the drops, the company said the figures beat its own guidance and that it will release further details of the 2009 results and an outlook for the full-year 2010 on Jan. 27.

For the full-year of 2009, SAP said total revenue was €10.66 billion, an 8 percent decline from the €11.57 billion generated in 2008.

Revenue from software and software-related services for 2009 dropped only 3 percent, to €8.19 billion, also beating the company’s forecasts — at the end of the third quarter, SAP had projected a decline of 6 to 8 percent.

Shares of SAP were up 1.2 percent at €35.96 in Frankfurt afternoon trading.