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Syntel's 1Q profit rises 14 pct on strong sales

TROY, Mich. (AP) -- Syntel Inc. reported Thursday that its first-quarter net income increased 14 percent in what is typically a seasonally weak period for the information technology outsourcing firm.

The company, based in Troy, Mich., earned $46.4 million, or $1.11 per share, for the period that ended March 31. That's compared with $40.7 million, or 98 cents per share, in the first quarter of 2012.

Syntel's revenue for the quarter increased 11 percent to $189.1 million, from $170.7 million last year, as demand for its products and services increased.

The quarter's results beat market expectations. Analysts polled by FactSet, on average, were expecting the company to earn $1.04 per share for the period, on revenue of $187.6 million.

The company said its margins did shrink slightly due to increased hiring, compensation and appreciation of the Indian rupee. The company added 772 employees during the quarter, ending the period with 22,179 employees globally.

Syntel CEO and President Prashant Ranade said customers are demanding solutions that reflect an informed understanding of their industry and the company is evolving with its customers' needs. He said the demand and overall environment for the company is improved from this time last year.

The company now expects to earn between $4.25 and $4.50 per share for the year on revenue of $785 million to $815 million. Analysts were forecasting earnings of $4.36 per share on revenue of $800.2 million for the year.

Shares gained 66 cents to $66.25 in early afternoon trading, after earlier spiking as high as $68.48. The stock has increased more than 23 percent so far in 2013.