Dell beats Wall Street estimates

The company's fourth-quarter results top estimates as its enterprise business holds up with slight declines. The consumer business takes a big hit.

The Dell XPS 13 ultrabook Dell
Dell's fourth-quarter results were carried by enterprise gear such as servers and networking, but the consumer business tanked.

The company, which recently announced plans to go private in a leveraged buyout, reported earnings of $530 million, or 30 cents a share, on revenue of $14.31 billion, down 11 percent from a year ago. Non-GAAP earnings in the fourth quarter were 40 cents a share.

Wall Street was expecting fourth-quarter earnings of 39 cents a share on revenue of $14.12 billion.

For fiscal 2013, Dell reported earnings of $2.37 billion, or $1.35 a share, on revenue of $56.94 billion, down 8 percent from a year ago.

In a statement, Dell Chief Financial Officer Brian Gladden said that software acquisitions, notably Quest, fueled better-than-expected revenue.

Dell declined to provide an outlook for the first quarter or fiscal 2014.

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By unit, Dell reported the following:

  • Large enterprise delivered operating income of $393 million in the fourth quarter on revenue of $4.7 billion, down 7 percent from a year ago. Server revenue was up 25 percent due to hyperscale servers.
  • Public sector revenue was $3.5 billion, down 9 percent from a year ago. Operating income in the fourth quarter fell 25 percent from a year ago to $236 million.
  • SMB sales were $3.4 billion, down 5 percent from the fourth quarter a year ago. Operating income was $385 million.
  • Consumer revenue tanked in the fourth quarter to $2.8 billion, down 24 percent from a year ago. Dell's operating income was $8 million.

The story originally appeared at ZDNet under the headline "Dell's Q4 better than expected as enterprise holds up, consumer tanks."

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