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Palo Alto Networks Q3 sales, outlook miss targets

Palo Alto Networks added more than 1,000 customers for the sixth straight quarter, but earnings were a mixed bag.
Written by Larry Dignan, Contributor on

Palo Alto Networks, a network security company, delivered a mixed fiscal third quarter and cut its sales outlook for the fourth quarter.

The company reported a fiscal third quarter net loss of $7.3 million, or 10 cents a share, on revenue of $101.3 million, up 54 percent from a year ago. Non-GAAP earnings were 6 cents a share.

Wall Street was looking for earnings of 5 cents a share on revenue of $103.46 million.

As for the fourth quarter, Palo Alto said that it will report revenue between $106 million and $110 million. Non-GAAP earnings will be about 6 cents a share. That outlook was below the earnings of 7 cents a share on sales of $113.7 million expected by Wall Street.

Shares were hammered in afterhours trading and fell 15 percent.



"While we are mindful of the current macroeconomic uncertainty, we are continuing to invest in product development, sales and go to market functions," said CFO Steffan Tomlinson.

The company said it added more than 1,000 customers for the sixth straight quarter.

On a conference call with analysts, Palo Alto Networks CEO Mark McLaughlin said renewal rates and subscriptions have been strong. He added:

We continued to demonstrate that we are aggressively capturing market share against all of our competitors and establishing Palo Alto Networks as the global leader in next-generation network enterprise security. Security is not immune to macroeconomic factors but is increasingly critical to enterprises.

Overall, Palo Alto has more than 12,500 customers on its platform. Meanwhile, the lifetime value of a top 25 customer is 14.1 times the initial purchase, up from 11.4 times the previous quarter.

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