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16 Dec 05. Oracle Corp. said profit fell 2.1% in its fiscal second quarter despite a 19% jump in revenue, largely reflecting continuing costs associated with its acquisition of PeopleSoft Inc. Some analysts also expressed concern about sluggishness in the company’s core database business. The Redwood City, Calif., software maker posted net income for the quarter ended Nov. 30 of $798m, or 15 cents a share, down from $815m, or 16 cents a share, in the year-earlier period. Revenue rose to $3.29bn from last year’s $2.76bn, driven primarily by growth in sales of business applications designed to assist with functions such as financial reporting and human resources. Reported sales of such applications were boosted by the company’s $10.6 billion takeover of PeopleSoft, a deal that closed in January. Oracle doesn’t break out sales or profits related to the former PeopleSoft. Excluding costs primarily related to the PeopleSoft acquisition, Oracle said it earned $972 million, or 19 cents a share. On that basis, earnings rose 16% from $837 million, or 16 cents a share, in the year-earlier period, and revenue rose 23% to $3.39bn from $2.76bn. (Source: WSJ)

07 Dec 05. Texas Instruments on Wednesday issued a more optimistic revenue and profit forecast for its fourth quarter, citing the strength of demand for its wireless semiconductors for mobile phones and its digital television chips. TI also said it was suffering from low inventory levels that meant it was struggling to meet demand from customers, but maintained other component providers faced similar problems. In a mid-quarter-update, the second-largest US chipmaker after Intel said revenues should be between $3.560bn and $3.705bn, compared to its prior forecast of $3.425bn to $3.715bn. TI expected earnings per share of 38 to 40 cents, compared to the 36 to 40 cents predicted at the end of the third quarter. Semiconductor revenues, which account for the bulk of sales, should be between $3.2bn and $3.325bn, compared to $3.075bn to $3.325bn. Sensors and controls could reach $295m to $305m, narrowing the prior range of $290m to $310m. The forecast for its Educational and Productivity Solutions division, best known for TI’s calculators, narrowed from $60m to $80m to $65m to $75m. (Source: FT.com)

16 Dec 05. Thales and IBD Holding GmbH have announced the creation of a joint venture called Advanced Survivability Technology SAS. The new company will specialise in survivability technologies for armoured vehicles. Advanced Survivability Technology is headquartered in La Ferté-Saint-Aubin, near Orléans, central France, and is equally owned by the two partners. Advanced Survivability Technology combines IBD Holding GmbH’s advanced technologies and Thales’ capabilities in electronics and international presence in land systems. It aims to become a global leader in survivability technologies (including active protection) for armoured vehicles. The innovative solutions developed by Advanced Survivability Technology are expected to generate significant growth in the next few years, as improving vehicle protection without increasing armour thickness is a critical priority for the armed forces. These solutions will meet the survivability requirements of land forces while contributing to high mobility. They will be versatile and able to adapt to all types of threats in all environments.

09 Dec 05. AEA Technology, the environment consultancy and rail services company, has returned to profit in spite of falling turnover. The company made a pre-tax profit of £3m (£3.6m losses) on turnover of £69.8m (£83.5m) in the six months to September 30. It said the fall in turnover was “entirely due to a lower level of activity in AEA Rail as a result of the very tough market conditions”. Staff numbers in the rail division fell from 650 to 350. Bernard Bulkin, chairman, said: “AEA has undergone a lot of necessary change this year and is now more focused and in a much stronger financial and operational pos

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