BMC sees unexpectedly strong quarter

BMC Software sees better-than-anticipated fourth-quarter revenue and plans to cut more than 400 jobs.

After market close Thursday, the maker of systems management software for mainframes and client-server networks said it expects to report fourth-quarter earnings of 23 cents to 25 cents per share, on revenue of $412 million to $422 million. BMC previously expected revenue of $401 million to $409 million for its fiscal fourth quarter, which ended last week.

Analyst consensus predicted BMC would earn 24 cents per share on fourth-quarter revenue of $409.6 million.

The company also said it would record a one-time charge of $14 million in the first quarter related to job cuts. BMC will cut about 6 percent of its work force of more than 7,300 workers.

"We felt that by combining these targeted reductions with the positive revenue growth momentum of the previous two quarters we will be ready to begin fiscal year 2002 on a firm foundation for revenue and earnings growth," said Bob Beauchamp, president and CEO.

Thursday's announcement means BMC will report its second straight quarter of better-than-expected results, following a horrid 2000 that saw declining sales for all vendors of mainframe software.

Shares of BMC traded at $24.14 in after-hours activity on the Island ECN, immediately following the news. BMC rose $4.22 to $23.30 ahead of the report.>