Why Sapient Shares Popped

Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of business and technology services provider Sapient (NASDAQ: SAPE  ) rose by as much as 15% today after after its quarterly results and forward guidance beat analysts' expectations.

So what: Today's results showed solid revenue growth across all three of the company's operating segments, led by SapientNitro, which grew 9% sequentially and comprised 67.6% of second-quarter revenue. Meanwhile, global markets grew 6% from last quarter, and government segment sales increased 3% over the same period.

Service revenue grew 13% year-over-year to $314.3 million, slightly beating estimates which called for sales of $313.8 million. The company's GAAP earnings per diluted share of $0.16 also beat expectations for earnings of $0.15 per share on the same basis. 

Now what: Though management admits the "environment for global marketing technology spending is still mixed," they do see strength not only across all three operating segments going forward in Q3, but also in the overall sales funnel led by North America. As a result, the company provided third-quarter revenue guidance of between $318 and $325 million, along with better-than-expected non-GAAP operating margin guidance of 13.5% to 15%.

Of course, this report was solid and forward guidance is strong, but with shares of Sapient now up nearly 50% so far in 2013 and trading at 34.4 times last year's earnings, much of that excitement may already be priced in.

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