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's happening: Shares of salesforce.com (NYSE:CRM) were up 11% as of 11:50 a.m. EST Thursday after the cloud-based CRM specialist announced inline fiscal fourth-quarter 2015 results, raised fiscal 2016 revenue guidance, and showed solid growth in its backlog.
Why it's happening: Quarterly revenue climbed 26% year over year to $1.44 billion, which translated to adjusted earnings of $0.14 per diluted share. Both figures were in line with analysts' expectations.
Perhaps most impressive, however, is that Salesforce reported deferred revenue of $3.32 billion, up 32% year over year. Unbilled deferred revenue, which represents business contracted but not yet billed and off the balance sheet, ended the year 27% higher at $5.7 billion. Because Salesforce generally pursues a subscription model for its cloud services, this shows the company is making meaningful progress in securing longer-term deals and serves as a great predictor of its future revenue.
For the current quarter, Salesforce expects revenue of roughly $1.485 billion to $1.505 billion, an increase of 21% to 23% over the same year-ago period. That should result in adjusted earnings per share of $0.13 to $0.14. Analysts had modeled slightly higher earnings of $0.15 per share on sales of $1.50 billion.
For the full fiscal 2016, Salesforce raised its revenue guidance range to $6.475 billion to $6.520 billion, from a prior range of $6.45 billion to $6.50 billion. The new range also includes an expected foreign exchange headwind of $175 million to $200 million. Fiscal 2016 adjusted earnings per share are expected to be $0.67 to $0.69. Wall Street, for its part, was looking for fiscal 2016 earnings and revenue of $0.69 per share and $6.51 billion, respectively.
In the end, this was a solid performance from Salesforce, whose solutions are securing new customers and growing quickly from an enormous base. Given its fourth-quarter results and impressive growth in deferred revenue, it's no surprise the market is bidding up the stock today.
Steve Symington owns shares of Apple. The Motley Fool recommends Apple and Salesforce.com. The Motley Fool owns shares of Apple. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.