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Red Hat Beats Forecasts, Beats Down Oracle

Red Hat has posted earnings that exceeded analysts expectations, despite expected pressures from rival Oracle's Enterprise Linux and their Unbreakable Linux Support offerings.

Excluding special items, the company said it posted a profit of $29.6 million, or 14 cents per share, after adjusting for stock compensation and tax expense.

Analysts, on average, were forecasting that the company would post a per-share profit excluding items of 12 cents a share on revenue of $104.1 million, according to Reuters Estimates.

During the quarter, the company said revenue rose 45 percent to $105.8 million as it added 12,000 new customers amid Oracle Corp.'s jump into the open-source software market.

It appears that analysts also agree that Red Hat has nothing to fear from Oracle Linux: "Open-source is not going away and Red Hat is the leader, Chowdhry said in a telephone interview. "Oracle is a nonevent when it comes to open source."

"Notwithstanding the changing dynamics of our market, we are cautiously optimistic that competitive efforts by some of the largest technology companies in the world are actually expanding our opportunity," Red Hat Chief Financial Officer Charlie Peters told an analyst conference call.

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