F5 met analysts' estimates in its third-quarter results earlier this month, growing revenue and earnings sequentially and year-over-year despite a cautious spending climate.
The Cisco (CSCO) and Juniper (JNPR) rival earned $1.14 a share on $352.6 million of revenue, up from 97 cents a share and $290.7 million in the prior year's quarter. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters expected earnings of $1.14 per share on $352.86 million in revenue for the quarter.
Despite some concern from analysts about macro headwinds and a share price that has plunged 11.9% to $93.65 this year, Topeka's White has a buy rating and $132 price target on F5.ISI Group analyst Brian Marshall also has a buy rating on F5, as well as a $140 price target. Application networking, he explained in a note, continues to be a secular growth market, with year-over-year annual growth around 10%. Marshall estimates that F5 will grow revenue around 19% in calendar year 2012 and around 15% in calendar year 2013, similar to Apple and VMware. Already reaping the benefits of the explosion in mobile data traffic growth, the Seattle-based firm says that it's well positioned for the growth in high-speed 4G LTE networks. "We have won several projects that are LTE-based," explained F5 CEO John McAdam, during a recent interview with TheStreet. "We have said that we think fiscal 13 is going to be where we really expect the growth, but we won some projects last quarter based just on that." --Written by James Rogers in New York. Follow @jamesjrogers >To submit a news tip, send an email to: email@example.com.