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Salesforce Shares Slide on Earnings Forecast

SAN FRANCISCO (TheStreet) -- As predicted, Salesforce.com (CRM) flew past Wall Street's estimates in its second-quarter results, released after the market close on Thursday. Still, the company's shares tanked on weaker-than-expected profit guidance.

The customer relationship management (CRM) specialist, one of TheStreet's top cloud stocks, reported sales of $732 million, a 34% increase on the prior year's quarter. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters predicted revenue of $728.32 million.

Excluding items, Salesforce.com earned 42 cents a share, up from 30 cents in the same period last year, and above Wall Street's estimate of 39 cents a share.

The second-quarter earnings number excludes the effects of $85 million in stock-based compensation, $20 million in amortization of purchased intangibles and $6 million in net non-cash interest.

For its fiscal third quarter, Salesforce.com projected earnings between 31 cents and 32 cents a share, below Wall Street's estimate of 34 cents. Investors balked at the outlook, pushing Salesforce.com shares down 5% to $139.50 in after-hours trading.

The company's revenue forecast, however, was more robust. Salesforce.com expects third-quarter sales between $773 million and $777 million, a year-over-year increase of 32% to 33%. Analysts were looking for revenue of $771.31 million.

For the full year, Salesforce.com expects revenue between $3.025 billion and $3.035 billion, and earnings between $1.48 a share and $1.51 a share. Analysts expect revenue of $3.021 billion and profit of $1.49 a share.

--Written by James Rogers in New York.

>To submit a news tip, send an email to: tips@thestreet.com.

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