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UPDATE 3-Salesforce sees robust profit, expects little impact from inflation

·2 min read
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(Adds analyst comment, details from conference call)

By Akash Sriram and Yuvraj Malik

May 31 (Reuters) - Salesforce Inc raised its full-year adjusted profit forecast and said it did not see any material impact from the uncertain broader economic environment, sending the enterprise software firm's shares up about 8% in extended trading.

The company said on Tuesday there was strong demand for its software from companies looking to improve efficiencies and incorporate modern-day work-flows, including hybrid work, despite a four-decade high inflation and tapering consumer demand.

Shares of the San-Francisco-based company rose 7.7% to $172.50, after plummeting about 37% this year as investors moved out of growth stocks on a series of bad news including high inflation in the United States and the Ukraine crisis.

Shares of rivals Oracle Corp and Microsoft Corp , which have also forecast an upbeat year, have fallen between 18% and 19% this year.

"Macroeconomic or geopolitical headwinds may show up sooner or later, but Salesforce is well positioned to capitalize on enterprise spending on digital transformation, and the company has a fairly resilient model," SMBC Nikko Securities analyst Steven Koenig said.

Salesforce increased its adjusted profit estimate for the fiscal year ending January 2023 to $4.75 per share from its prior forecast of $4.63.

The profit forecast raise is a big positive as it's a key area of investor focus, especially in the current market environment, said William Blair & Company analyst Arjun Bhatia.

However, foreign exchange headwinds forced the company to marginally lower its revenue forecast for the year to $31.7 billion to $31.8 billion, from its earlier forecast of $32 billion to $32.1 billion.

Revenue in the first quarter ending April 30 rose 24% to $7.41 billion from a year earlier, above analysts' average estimate of $7.38 billion, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

Net income fell to $28 million from $469 million.

(Reporting by Akash Sriram and Yuvraj Malik in Bengaluru; Editing by Shinjini Ganguli)