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Websense's Sales Jump

The IT security company sees higher billings and receivable collections.

IT security company

Websense

(WBSN)

beat analysts' expectations for the fourth quarter and guided higher for the fiscal year 2008 on increased renewals from its existing customers.

However for the fourth quarter it reported a net loss of $26.9 million, or 59 cents a share in the quarter, compared with an income of $7.7 million, or earnings of 17 cents a share, a year ago largely due to acquisition related charges and write-offs stemming from its purchase of U.K.- based company SurfControl last year.

Excluding charges, net income was $12.8 million, or 28 cents a share, which was higher than analysts' expectations of 23 cents a share, and 3 cents higher than its EPS a year ago.

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Revenue for the quarter was $86.2 million compared with $47.33 million a year ago. Analysts were expecting earnings of $78.14 million.

Shares of Websense were up $1.50, or 8.7%, to $18.50 in recent extended trading.

The company's better-than-anticipated billings and its increased receivable collections helped generate strong cash flow during the quarter and helped the company pre-pay $20 million on the credit facility used to acquire SurfControl, said Websense. The move reduces its outstanding acquisition-related debt to $190 million.

Billings for the fourth quarter were $108.6 million, which represents the full amount of subscription contracts billed to customers during the period, including subscription contracts billed to SurfControl customers.

Fourth-quarter billings included about $2.2 million in billings for its data loss prevention solution, and about $5 million in billings for hosted security services.

"Given our improved outlook for 2008, we expect we will continue to make pre-payments on the debt as well as resume limited share repurchases," said Dudley Mendenhall, Websense chief financial officer.

For the fiscal year 2008, Websense expects revenue to range between $325 million and $335 million and earnings, excluding charges, of $1.15 to $1.25 a share. Analysts are expecting revenue of $309.50 and earnings of $1.15 a share. The company expects billings to range from $345 million to $355 million during the year.