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BlackBerry Earnings Highlight Strong Momentum

By Daniel Sparks – Updated Apr 17, 2019 at 12:18PM

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The former phone-maker has successfully pivoted to become an enterprise software company with a growing bottom line.

BlackBerry (BB -3.81%), a provider of security-focused software and services for enterprises, just wrapped up its fiscal 2019 with strong fourth-quarter results. The quarter helped the company meet all of its financial targets for the year, including 10% software and services revenue growth, significantly higher earnings per share, and $83 million in free cash flow.

Here's a look at BlackBerry's fiscal fourth-quarter results, which were released Friday morning.

A business person holding an icon of a shield in his hand

Image source: Getty Images.

BlackBerry's fourth-quarter results: The raw numbers

Metric

Q4 2019

Q4 2018

Year-Over-Year Change

Non-GAAP revenue

$257 million

$239 million

8%

Non-GAAP EPS

$0.11

$0.05

120%

Non-GAAP gross margin

82%

79%

N/A

Fiscal years shown. Data source: BlackBerry's fiscal fourth-quarter results.

What happened with BlackBerry this quarter?

  • BlackBerry's non-GAAP revenue rose 8% year over year to $257 million.
  • GAAP revenue increased 9% year over year.
  • Highlighting the company's momentum in software and services, non-GAAP software and services revenue hit a record high of $248 million, up 14% year over year.
  • BlackBerry's non-GAAP earnings per share increased from $0.05 in the year-ago quarter to $0.11.
  • Helping BlackBerry's profitability was a non-GAAP gross margin of 82%, up from 79% in the year-ago quarter.
  • Free cash flow generated during the quarter amounted to $20 million.
  • BlackBerry's net cash balance at the end of the period was $400 million.

Check out the latest earnings call transcript for BlackBerry.

What management had to say

BlackBerry CEO John Chen was pleased with the quarter, noting that results were driven by record-high software and services revenue.

During the company's earnings call, Chen also highlighted the company's recent acquisition of Cylance as a notable achievement.

Finally, we completed our acquisition of Cylance. Cylance is a next-generation endpoint security technology which participates in the fast-growing market, and they provide technologies that are shaping the future direction of cybersecurity. The AI and machine learning capabilities we added are synergistic with our long-term vision for BlackBerry Spark, our integrated secure communication platform for the IoT.

Looking forward

Management is optimistic about fiscal 2020, guiding for full-year revenue to rise 23% to 27% year over year.

The company also provided an outlook for its recently acquired Cylance business, forecasting BlackBerry Cylance to grow revenue 25% to 30% year over year compared to the 12-month period ending February 28, 2019. This growth is on a base of about $170 million, management said.

In fiscal 2010, BlackBerry expects to be able to invest aggressively while simultaneously being profitable. "[W]e are investing for current and future growth," explained Chen during the company's earnings call, "Though we are investing, we still anticipate being profitable on a full-year basis, even with the diluted impact of the Cylance acquisition."

Daniel Sparks has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends BlackBerry. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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