Symantec struggling for growth in latest quarter

Symantec struggling for growth in latest quarter

Nearly a year after its acquisition of Veritas Software, Symantec continues to struggle to find a way to boost profits. On Tuesday the company reported quarterly profits of US$279 million for the first three months of 2006, a drop from the US$314 million reported during the same period last year.

Revenue for the combined company was up slightly, totalling US$1.3 billion for the quarter, compared to US$1.29 billion a year ago. And the company's earnings for this fourth fiscal 2006 quarter, which ended on March 31, amounted to US$0.26 per share, just slightly ahead of analyst expectations.

Symantec completed its US$13.5 billion acquisition of Veritas in July 2005, and has since struggled to convince Wall Street that the merger of the two company's security and storage technologies makes sense. Symantec's stock, (SYMC) which was trading in the US$32 range before the acquisition was announced, closed on Tuesday at US$17.09.

During this most recent quarter, Symantec saw no growth in its consumer business, which accounts for 28% of revenue. Sales of the company's data protection products dropped 8% year over year.

The company had better luck with its enterprise security line, which includes content filtering and intrusion prevention software. This line of business grew 9% year over year.

Sales in the Americas region, which represent more then half of Symantec's total revenue, dropped 2% from the previous year. International sales were up 5%, however, led by the Asia-Pacific region, where revenue grew by 9% from the fourth quarter of fiscal 2005.

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