Accenture Plc raised its full-year net revenue forecast well above analysts' expectations and reported better-than-expected quarterly revenue and profit, led by strong growth in its consulting business, especially in North America.
Shares of the company, whose competitors include IBM Corp and India's Infosys Ltd and Tata Consultancy Services, were up 2.1 percent in premarket trading.
Accenture, which is incorporated in Ireland but run out of Chicago, said on Thursday it now expected full-year net revenue to increase by 8-10 percent in local currency terms, up from its previous estimate of 6-9 percent.
That implies revenue of $33.53 billion-$34.15 billion, well above the average analyst estimate of $32.20 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Revenue in the company's consulting division rose to $4.29 billion in the second quarter ended Feb. 29, an increase of 12 percent in U.S. dollar terms and 18 percent in local currency.
The business accounted for a little more than half of Accenture's revenue, with the rest coming from its outsourcing business. Outsourcing revenue was $3.65 billion, flat in U.S. dollar terms but up 6 percent in local currency. [nBw81mksva]
Accenture has been investing heavily to boost its digital business, which offers analytics, content management, social media and cloud services to businesses.
Up to Wednesday's close, the company's stock had risen nearly 18 percent in the past 12 months compared with a 0.5 percent increase in the S&P 500 IT Services index.
Net revenue, or revenue before reimbursements, rose 6 percent in U.S. dollar terms and 12 percent in local currency terms, to $7.95 billion in the latest quarter.
Net income attributable to Accenture rose to $1.33 billion, or $2.08 per share, from $690.7 million, or $1.08 per share in the year-earlier period.
Excluding items, the company earned $1.34 per share.
Analysts on average had expected a profit of $1.18 per share and revenue of $7.72 billion.
(Reporting by Abhirup Roy in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel and Ted Kerr)
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Updated Date: Mar 24, 2016 19:00 PM