The Ultimate Software Group Management Discusses Q2 2012 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

The Ultimate Software Group (ULTI)

Q2 2012 Earnings Call

July 31, 2012 5:00 pm ET


Mitchell K. Dauerman - Chief Financial Officer, Principal Accounting Officer, Executive Vice President and Treasurer

Scott Scherr - Founder, Chairman of the Board, Chief Executive Officer, President and Chairman of Executive Committee


Michael B. Nemeroff - Crédit Suisse AG, Research Division

Michael Huang - Needham & Company, LLC, Research Division

Laura Lederman - William Blair & Company L.L.C., Research Division

David Togut - Evercore Partners Inc., Research Division

Richard K. Baldry - Wunderlich Securities Inc., Research Division

Gregory Dunham - Goldman Sachs Group Inc., Research Division

Jeffrey L. Houston - Barrington Research Associates, Inc., Research Division

Shawn Yuan - Roth Capital Partners, LLC, Research Division

Matthew J. Coss - Piper Jaffray Companies, Research Division

Raghavan Sarathy - Dougherty & Company LLC, Research Division

Terrell Frederick Tillman - Raymond James & Associates, Inc., Research Division

Brian J. Schwartz - Oppenheimer & Co. Inc., Research Division



Hello, and welcome to Ultimate's Second Quarter 2012 Financial Results Conference Call. [Operator Instructions] Today's conference is being recorded. Your presenters today will be Mr. Scott Scherr, Chief Executive Officer, President and Founder of Ultimate; and Mitchell K. Dauerman, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. We will begin with comments from Mr. Dauerman.

Mitchell K. Dauerman

Okay. Thank you, Melanie. Good afternoon, everyone, and thank you for your interest in Ultimate Software. Before we begin, please be aware that we will be discussing our business outlook and we'll be making other forward-looking statements regarding our current expectations of future events and the future financial performance of the company. These forward-looking statements are based upon information available to us as of today's date and are subject to risks and uncertainties.

We encourage you to review our filings with the SEC for additional information on risk factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from our current expectations. We assume no duty or obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

I'm going to begin by reviewing our financial results for the second quarter of 2012 and then I'll provide financial guidance for the third quarter. Unless otherwise noted, our discussion will be on a non-GAAP basis for all costs, gross margins, operating and net income, as well as EPS. And the primary difference between GAAP and non-GAAP financial information is noncash stock-based compensation. Please refer to the reconciliation of our financial information on a GAAP basis to that on a non-GAAP basis, which is included in the press release as published on our website.

For the quarter, the recurring revenues grew 24.3% to $64.6 million and represented 82% of total revenues. Total revenues grew by 23.3% to $79.2 million. Operating income increased by 55.4% to $10.3 million and the operating margin expanded to 13%. Net income grew to $5.9 million compared to $3.8 million last year, and the related net earnings per diluted share was $0.21 compared with $0.14 per diluted share in 2011.

Both the recurring revenue for the quarter of $64.6 million and the recurring revenue gross margin of 71.2% were slightly better than our forecast. Annualized customer retention exceeded 96% for our recurring revenue customer base. And please remember that our recurring revenue gross margin is impacted by the investment in and the continued growth of our Tax Filing business. Speaking of the Tax Filing business, our average daily float balance for the year-to-date was $300 million, and this is compared to $180 million for the same period last year. Due to the current yield environment, the revenue impact of these funds is immaterial. Service revenue was $14 million, representing an increase of 19.1% over the same quarter last year. The services gross margin for the quarter was slightly better than we expected. Keep in mind that on a sequential quarter basis, the revenues and gross margins reflect the seasonality of W-2 revenues. The gross margin rate for total revenues was 58.5% compared to 57.9% for the same period last year. The change from 2011 was related to the growth in recurring revenues and a 40-basis point expansion in the related gross margin. Operating expenses were $36 million for the quarter and were favorable to our expectations. We do expect a significant portion of these expenses to be incurred later this year and as reflected in our full year guidance.

Operating income was $10.3 million, and our operating margin was 13% for the quarter versus $6.6 million and 10.3% for the same quarter last year. The excess margin over our guidance was due to slightly higher recurring revenues coupled with lower costs. Net income was $5.9 million or $0.21 per diluted share compared with $3.8 million and $0.14 per diluted share for the same quarter last year. Our non-GAAP income tax rate for the quarter was 42%.

Turning to the balance sheet. Total cash and investments and marketable securities were $73.1 million. On a year-to-date basis, we generated $22.7 million in cash from operations compared with $15.2 million last year. We purchased $7.4 million in capital expenditures for the first 6 months of this year compared with $7.6 million for the same period last year.

We used $4.3 million in the 6-month period to repurchase shares required to settling employees tax withholding obligations associated with the restricted stock units they vested. We have 1,058,000 shares remaining that are available for repurchase under our plan.

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