Shares of

Open Text

(OTEX) - Get Report

plummeted Tuesday in late trading after the Canadian software maker warned of weaker-than-expected fiscal first-quarter results.

Shares of Open Text shed $3.58, or 17.9%, to $16.47 in recent after-hours trading. Shares closed the regular session up 50 cents, or 2.6%, at $20.05.

After the market close, Waterloo, Ontario-based Open Text said it expects pro forma earnings to range from 3 cents to 6 cents a share -- significantly short of analyst estimates gathered by Thomson First Call that called for pro forma earnings of 11 cents a share.

In addition, Open Text said first-quarter revenue would range from $84 million to $86 million, short of the $89.4 million consensus estimate among analysts. The company's previous guidance called for revenue of $87 million to $93 million with pro forma earnings of 7 cents to 12 cents a share.

Under generally accepted accounting principles, Open Text expects to post a loss of a penny to 4 cents a share.

The company said its guidance for fiscal 2005 remains unchanged. In August, Open Text said it expects fiscal-year 2005 revenue of $420 million to $450 million with pro forma earnings of $1.10 to $1.30 a share. The latest consensus estimate among analysts called for fiscal 2004 earnings of $1.13 a share on $437.3 million.

Open Text, which makes content management software, said its results were hurt by a number of deals that didn't close during the quarter. Its results and corresponding stock slide came in contrast to a

big jump enjoyed Tuesday by rival


( FILE), which announced a date for its earnings report Monday and consequently led many investors to believe the company wouldn't preannounce weak results.