Check Point Software Sees Further Gains in Q4; CFO takes 6 months leave | WSAU News/Talk 550AM 99.9FM

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By Steven Scherer

JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Check Point Software Technologies expects revenue growth of up to 10% in the fourth quarter after well beating third-quarter profit estimates on double-digit growth in product and subscription sales to protect the cloud and other networks against cyberattacks.

He also noted that starting in November, CFO Tal Payne will take a six-month sabbatical. Vice President of Finance Roei Golan will serve as interim CFO.

Israel-based Check Point said Thursday it earned $1.77 per diluted share excluding one-time items in the July-September quarter, from $1.65 a year earlier. Revenue increased 8% to $578 million.

It was expected to earn $1.67 per share on revenue of $572 million, according to I/B/E/S data from Refinitiv.

For the fourth quarter, Check Point forecast revenue of $608 million to $658 million, down from $599.1 million a year earlier and against analyst expectations of $630.8 million. He also expects adjusted earnings per share of $2.22 to $2.42, while analysts expect $2.33.

While Check Point predicts a strong end to 2022, chief executive Gil Shwed said it’s difficult to estimate the outlook for next year.

“This year in particular, the level of uncertainty is very, very high,” he told reporters. “Despite all the turmoil going on in the market, we are seeing stable and very, very good results.”

For all of 2022, Check Point forecasts revenue of $2.299 billion to $2.349 billion, down from a previous estimate of $2.2 billion to $2.375 billion. It also narrowed its range for Adjusted EPS to $7.20-$7.40 from $6.90-$7.50.

In the last quarter, cyberattacks increased by 28%, underscoring the critical need for cybersecurity, Shwed said.

Check Point has moved to a prevention-focused security system that includes securing corporate networks, the cloud, and employees working remotely. Security subscription revenue increased 13% in the quarter. It has also expanded its offerings to prevent phishing and threats on Internet of Things (IOT) devices such as smart TVs and smart locks.

Its Nasdaq-listed shares rose 2.2% in premarket trading.

With $3.6 billion in cash, Check Point said it repurchased 2.67 million shares during the quarter for a value of $325 million, as part of its share buyback program.

(Reporting by Steven Scheer; editing by Jason Neely and Bernadette Baum)

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