SAP Forecasts Sunnier 2010

Profits fell 4% in 2009

SAP, the world's largest professional software group, on Jan. 27 reported a 4% fall in net profit in 2009 but said it expected to bounce back this year.

SAP said net profit fell to 1.8 billion euros (US$2.5 billion) in 2009, a year marked by a cost-cutting program in which the company reduced its workforce for the first time with the elimination of 3,000 jobs.

The company's fourth-quarter net profit fell by 12% to 727 million euros.

But SAP said it was forecasting a 30-31% jump in operating profit this year compared to 27.4% in 2009.

It also expects revenue linked to software and associated services to rise by between 4% and 8% after a fall of 3% last year.

After cutting jobs for the first time last year, SAP chief executive Leo Apotheker said there would not be a "massive cost-cutting program" in 2010.

The Walldorf-based company, which employs nearly 47,600 people, said it would even hire this year but provided no details.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2010

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