SunGard upbeat despite Q4 net losses

SunGard upbeat despite Q4 net losses

Technology giant SunGard's overall fourth quarter net losses widened on a $1.13 billion goodwill write down in its Availability Services business. With the ripple effect of the credit crisis continuing to make waves, the group's financial services unit performed better than anticipated, reporting Q4 income down just eight per cent on the same period in 2008.

The privately held firm says Q4 revenue was $1.47 billion, down five per cent from $1.54 billion in the same period the previous year. Adjusted Ebitda was $441 million, down 10.5% from the prior-year period.

Losses for the year were $1.1 billion, up from $187 million in Q4 2008. However, the results include a noncash write-down of goodwill in the company's Availability Services business of $1.13 billion.

Organic revenue was down seven per cent for the fourth quarter. Approximately four percentage points of the fall was attributable to one broker/dealer business, which was hit by "market volatility and customer mix" and saw revenue down 36% in the fourth quarter.

The Financial Systems unit as a whole saw revenue for the quarter slide eight per cent to $836 million. Organic revenue decreased 10% in Q4. License fees were $83 million, a decrease of $4 million.

For the full year, total revenue was $5.51 billion, down two per cent from 2008. Net loss was $1.17 billion, up from $242 million.

Cristóbal Conde, president and CEO, SunGard, says: "Our results reflect the full-year impact of the credit crisis and the economic recession. We planned for a difficult year, but overall our results were better than anticipated. The IT spending mood shows signs of tempered optimism, but sales cycles remain long and pricing pressure is high."

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