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Corporate Reports

SAP thrives on cloud business, but strong euro a worry

Europe's largest software maker, SAP, has reported its cloud business has been making big strides, with revenues and underlying profit rising. But a strong euro has once again dented quarterly earnings.

Germany's SAP reported Thursday it had been able to expand its thriving licensed software business in the first quarter of the year. Turnover from its cloud-based applications rose by 32 percent year-on-year to 221 million euros ($305.8 million).

The Walldorf-based company indicated growth prospects for the segment were still huge, with SAP's cloud business only accounting for some 6 percent of total revenues.

Non-cloud software licensing dropped by 5 percent between January and March to total 623 million euros in revenues.

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Co-Chief Executives Bill McDermott and Jim Hagemann Snabe said the company was on its way to becoming the world's leader in the cloud business, not least because of the clout of its Hana database capable of processing huge amounts of data in real time. Right now, SAP is number two in the field behind Salesforce of the US.

SAP said first-quarter results were heavily impacted by a strong euro, making the company's products more expensive abroad. While overall turnover rose by 2 percent in real terms to reach 3.7 billion euros, the company would have logged a much stronger 6 percent rise, if revenues were adjusted for currency exchange rate-based factors.

Earnings before interest and tax also increased by more than 2 percent to 919 million euros, slightly lower than analysts had penciled in for the first three months of the year.

hg/dr (dpa, Reuters)

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