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Tech Industry

STOCKS TO WATCH: Adobe Systems, EBay, Tibco Software and Vitria Technologies

Expect the following technology stocks to be among Friday's most actively traded issues: Adobe Systems, EBay, Tibco Software and Vitria.

  • Adobe Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: ADBE)

    The desktop-publishing software developer easily topped analysts' estimates in its first quarter Thursday and set a 2-for-1 stock split.

    The San Jose, Calif. company raked in $57.2 million, or 80 cents a share, on record sales of $261 million.

    First Call consensus expected Adobe to earn 74 cents a share in the quarter.

    Its shares closed up 2 9/16 to 97 7/8 ahead of the earnings report.

    The $261 million in sales represents a 21 percent jump compared to the year-ago period when it earned $152,000 on sales of $223 million.

    Including investment gains and losses from the company's venture programs, Adobe earned 88 cents a share in the quarter.

    Application sales rose to $230.7 million versus $182.1 million in the year-ago quarter. Licensing sales fell from $40.8 million in the third quarter of 1998 to $30.2 million this time around.

    Company officials credited strong demand for its Photoshop 5.5 software as well as sales of its InDesign, GoLive and Illustrator offerings.

    Looking ahead, Warnock said Adobe expects to see revenue growth of at least 20 percent in fiscal 2000 and an annual operating margin of 30 percent.

    The 2-for-1 stock split will be paid in the form of a dividend to shareholders of record on Oct. 4. It also declared a cash dividend of 5 cents a share.

    EBay Inc. (Nasdaq: EBAY)

    The Internet auctioneer is facing new competition from an alliance of technology companies including Microsoft Corp. (MSFT), Lycos Inc. (LCOS), Dell Computer Corp. (DELL) and Excite At Home (ATHM), the Wall Street Journal reported.

    Shares closed equivalent to $150.61. in German trading, leaving it below the U.S. closing price of 151 3/4 Thursday.

  • Tibco Software Inc. (Nasdaq: TIBX)

    Tibco reported a smaller-than-expected loss in its third quarter Thursday, losing $1.9 million, or 3 cents a share, on sales of $24 million.

    First Call consensus expected it to lose 6 cents a share.

    Its shares closed up 5/8 to 35 3/4 ahead of the earnings report.

  • Vitria Technologies (Nasdaq: VITR)

    Virtia priced 3 million shares Thursday night at 16, slightly above their increased price range of $13 to $15 each. Shares were originally priced at $10 to $12 a share.

    Vitria may have a hard time standing out from other e-business offerings, said Ed Acly, director of middleware research at International Data Corp. Acly, who sees at least 2 companies a day, said he "hasn't met anyone in the last two months who hasn't said they're e-business." Acly expects the company will fare comparably to similar businesses Tibco Software (Nasdaq:TIBX) and Active Software (Nasdaq: ASWX), which had relatively successful debuts

    BusinessWare, Vitria's key product, is infrastructure software that allows companies to conduct business via the Internet automatically, without human intervention or the manual entry of information. BusinessWare licensees include Federal Express Corp. (NYSE: FDX), Duke Energy Corp. (NYSE: DUK) and PageMart Wireless Inc. (Nasdaq: PMWI).

    Vitria had a net loss of $6.0 million on revenue of $7.1 million in for the six months ended July 30, 1999, compared to a loss of $4.3 million on revenue of 1.0 million for the same period in 1998 .