SUNNYVALE, Calif. -- Storage company
(NTAP - Get Report)
blew past analysts' estimates in its first-quarter results Wednesday, and, in a surprise move, announced that it has swapped out its CEO.
NetApp posted first-quarter revenue of $838 million, down 4% on the same period last year, but well above analysts' estimate of $828.3 million.
Excluding items, NetApp earned 22 cents a share on net income of $76 million, flat compared to the prior year's quarter, but comfortably beating analysts' estimate of 20 cents a share.
The company also announced that its COO Tom Georgens has taken the company's reins from Dan Warmenhoven, who now becomes NetApp executive chairman. In a statement, the firm described the move as a "planned transition" and explained that Warmenhoven will now build and expand NetApp's links with service providers and other technology partners.
"I have had a long-time goal to transition out of the CEO role before I turn 60, which is about five quarters from now," said Warmenhoven, during a conference call after market close. "Tom is absolutely the right person to succeed me."
NetApp, which recently
(EMC - Get Report)
in the battle to
, is nonetheless seen as one of tech's
"Given the economic backdrop, NetApp performed well in the first quarter," said Georgens, in a statement released after market close. "With year-over-year growth roughly flat on a constant currency basis, our revenue performance clearly outpaced the storage industry at large."
Including items, NetApp grew its first-quarter profit, earning 15 cents a share on net income of $52 million, up from 10 cents a share and $35 million in the prior year's quarter.
On a non-GAAP basis, NetApp expects second-quarter gross margins between 62.5% and 63%. The storage maker did not, however, provide second-quarter revenue guidance, citing lake of macroeconomic visibility.