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EMC Allays Investors' Storage Fears

HOPKINTON, Mass. ( TheStreet) -- EMC (EMC) comfortably beat Wall Street's revenue estimate in its third-quarter results, which were released before market open on Tuesday. The storage giant allayed investors fears' about demand for one of its key products.

The storage maker brought in record third-quarter revenue of $4.21 billion, a 20% hike on the same period last year that was well above Wall Street's forecast of $4.15 billion. Excluding items, EMC earned 30 cents a share, in line with analysts' estimate.

"It appears that, despite rampant investor fears over the past month, the company saw very healthy demand during the quarter for its Symmetrix networked storage platform," wrote Daniel Ives, an analyst at FBR Capital Markets, in a note released on Tuesday, explaining that Symmetrix sales were up 23% year-over-year.

Virtualization specialist VMware (VMW), which is majority owned by EMC, also contributed to the storage giant's healthy third quarter results, bringing in revenue of $715 million, above Wall Street's forecast of $698 million.

FBR's Ives noted, however, that VMware's weaker-than-expected bookings could weigh on EMC shares in Tuesday morning trading. EMC's stock was down 27 cents, or 1.30%, to $20.56 in early morning trading.

Widely regarded as something of a bellwether for enterprise tech spending, EMC's results can nonetheless be seen as positive for the rest of the sector. The company's RSA security business grew 22% compared to the prior year's quarter, and EMC also cited strong demand for its backup and recovery products.

EMC, which has recently been touted as a potential Oracle(ORCL) acquisition target, also raised its guidance for this fiscal year, predicting sales of $16.9 billion and earnings of $1.25 a share, compared to its previous forecast of $16.5 billion and $1.18 a share.

Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters were expecting revenue of $16.7 billion and earnings of $1.21 a share.

--Written by James Rogers in New York.

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