SAP profit falls for Q3, drops sales forecast

SAP profits fell 5 percent in the third quarter, and the company has withdrawn its sales forecast for the rest of the year.

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SAP profits fell 5 percent in the third quarter, and the company has withdrawn its sales forecast for the rest of the year.

Net profit for the quarter dropped to €388 million (£310 million) compared to €408 million (£326 million) for the same period ending September 30 last year.

The company also reported nine-month results, with net income for the first three quarters of the year of €1.57 billion (£1.25 billion), a 4 percent decrease over last year's net of €1.62 billion (£1.29 billion) for the same period.

"In light of the uncertainties surrounding the current economic and business environment, the Company decided to no longer provide a specific outlook for non-GAAP software and software-related service revenues for the full-year 2008," it said in a statement. However, SAP did say it expected its non-GAAP operating margin for the year, excluding a write-down of €180 million (£144 million) from its purchase of Business Objects, to be around 28 percent.

Henning Kagermann, co-CEO of SAP said, “We are assessing business activity continuously, and we are balancing the need for greater efficiencies with steady advancements in our products, customer services and technologies, while addressing customers’ most critical business issues.

"This approach has worked well for customers and SAP throughout the up and down economic cycles of the past, and has contributed to SAP’s market leadership. We’ve been through uncertainty before, and have always emerged as a better, stronger and more efficient company.”

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