A strong increase in its hardware sales has helped Hewlett-Packard (HP) beat analysts' predictions for its third quarter results.
Revenues reached $12 billion for the period ended 31 July, compared to $11 billion last year. Net profits jumped 37 per cent to $853 million, despite a $60 million hit to its balance sheet as a result of the impending separation of it computer and test and measurement units.
Earnings per share including the separation costs were $0.81, narrowly beating the $0.80 per share consensus of analysts polled by First Call. Excluding costs, earnings per share were $0.85.
HP said sales of its storage products fell sharply over the quarter but noted this was expected after its high profile divorce from EMC, its former high end OEM storage systems supplier (see Newswire, 10 May, 1999).
The company praised its computer product revenues which grew at "record levels" and helped drive profits "to a new level". Net revenues for the computer and imaging businesses increased 12 per cent to $10.3 billion.
Carly Fiorina, HP's new president and chief executive, said: "We must become more aggressive and much more focused, and we are resolved to do so."
Separately HP's test and measurement unit, recently renamed as Agilent, said it has filed to go public.
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