SAP Profit Jumps 97%

Demand rose in both developed and emerging economies

German software maker SAP AG said on April 28 that its first quarter net profit nearly doubled as demand for its products rose in both developed and emerging economies, boosting sales.

SAP, whose programs help companies do back-office work such as payroll, inventory management and accounting, and is used by Apple Inc.'s iTunes, reported net income of €387 million (US$514.3 million) in the January-March period compared with €196 million a year earlier. That's an increase of 97%.

Germany's biggest software company said the increase in profit was driven by a boost in revenue, which rose 5% to €2.5 billion in the quarter compared with nearly €2.4 billion a year earlier.

Of that figure, software revenues were up 12% to €1.95 billion and software license sales -- a key barometer of maintenance and upgrade fees, rose 11% to €464 million compared with €418 million a year earlier.

"We are excited by our strong momentum and our return to growth in the first quarter," CFO Werner Brandt said. "A solid top-line performance in combination with an increasing operating margin puts us on track to achieve our financial objective of profitable growth over the long term."

Jim Hagemann Snabe, the company's CEO, said the growth in revenue was continued signs of improvement in the global economy with companies looking to spend again on information technology and back-end software management. "As the environment improves and customers begin to invest for growth again, SAP is extremely well-positioned" to meet those demands, he said.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.

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