Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce.
Photograph by David Paul Morris—Bloomberg via Getty Images
By Reuters
May 18, 2016

Salesforce.com is joining the ranks of the technology old-guard, but its 27% revenue growth last quarter still showed some startup zip.

The company also raised its full-year forecast, driven by higher demand for its web-based sales and marketing software.

Shares of the company, which is seen as a barometer for the cloud-computing sector, rose 5.9% in after-hours trading.

Salesforce has been gaining market share from Oracle and SAP in enterprise business applications as more companies choose cheaper and easier cloud-software services.

The company said it would continue to deliver strong growth. For the full year, Salesforce said it expects revenue of $8.16 billion-$8.20 billion and adjusted profit of $1.00-$1.02 per share.

The company had previously forecast revenue of $8.08 billion-$8.12 billion and profit of 99 cents-$1.01 per share for the period.

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Because Salesforce and other subscription-software companies generally book revenue in stages rather than as a onetime sale, investors keep a close eye on deferred revenue, meaning money it expects to earn in future quarters.

Deferred revenue in the quarter was $4.01 billion, up from $3.06 billion a year earlier.

Revenue from its sales cloud collection of software, which allows companies to track leads and forecast opportunities around sales, rose 14.9% to $724.6 million.

The San Francisco-based company said its app-cloud business, which allows third-party developers to create apps for its software platform, recorded a 45.5% jump in revenue growth.

The company’s net income rose to $38.8 million, or six cents per share, in the first quarter ended April 30 from $4.1 million, or one cent per share, a year earlier.

Excluding special items, the company earned 24 cents per share.

Revenue rose 26.8% to $1.92 billion.

Analysts on average had expected a profit of 23 cents per share on revenue of $1.89 billion, according to Thomson Reuters.

For the full year, Salesforce said it expects revenue of $8.16 billion-$8.20 billion and adjusted profit of $1.00-$1.02 per share.

The company had previously forecast revenue of $8.08 billion-$8.12 billion and profit of 99 cents-$1.01 per share for the period.

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