Europe’s largest software manufacturer SAP earned significantly more than expected in the past third quarter and is increasing the business outlook. Adjusted for special effects and before interest and taxes, the operating result rose surprisingly, according to preliminary figures, by 2 percent to 2.10 billion euros, as the Dax heavyweight announced on Tuesday evening in Walldorf.
Thanks to the cloud business, which is growing by a fifth, sales increased by 5 percent to 6.84 billion euros compared to the weak previous quarter. Analysts had previously expected a significantly weaker increase.
The bottom line was that at 1.42 billion euros, there was still 14 percent less net profit than a year ago, and above all more money was needed for share-based compensation for employees.
Cloud business is growing faster and faster
After the surprisingly good performance, SAP boss Christian Klein increased the financial forecast for the current year slightly. In the third quarter, the software for use via the network was again the growth driver, now the Walldorf-based company is expecting a currency-adjusted increase in sales of 16 to 19 percent in 2021. Most recently, a 15 to 18 percent increase was planned.
Adjusted operating profit is now expected to decrease by a maximum of 2 percent after adjusting for currency effects instead of 4 percent. In the better case, SAP continues to consider a value as in the previous year to be possible at constant exchange rates.
“We are experiencing a record demand for our applications and our platform,” said Klein, according to the announcement. “This has accelerated our cloud growth significantly.” The cloud business is growing faster and faster and has led to the increased outlook for the full year, said CFO Luka Mucic. A similar trend was already underlined by SAP in July.