Symantec ends fiscal year with strong earnings

Symantec reported Q4 revenue ahead of expectations.

With more than half of its revenue now coming from outside the U.S., Symantec ended its fiscal year on a high note on Wednesday.

The security software company posted earnings of US$309 million, or US$0.36 per share, for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2008, which ended March 28. That was up 50 percent from last year's results and better than analyst expectations. In a poll of 27 estimates by Thomson Financial, financial analysts forecast earnings to be US$0.34 per share, on average.

Analysts expected revenue of US$1.53 billion; Symantec reported US$1.54 billion.

After struggling to manage its 2005 acquisition of storage giant Veritas software, Symantec performed well during its 2008 fiscal year. A weakening U.S. currency and strong growth outside of the U.S. have helped the company's bottom line.

Symantec said that 53 percent of its revenue now comes from outside of the U.S., where the company saw a 15 percent growth rate, year-over-year. Asia is the fastest-growing region, with revenue growing at 19 percent. In Europe, the Middle East and Africa, the growth rate was 17 percent.

The company didn't do as well in the U.S., Latin America and Canada, where revenue was up 10 percent over the same period.

In a statement, Symantec CEO John Thompson called the company's current offerings "the strongest product portfolio we've had in years."

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