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SAP again lifts FY'18 outlook on higher Q3 cloud revenue

German enterprise application software provider SAP SE again raised its outlook for full year 2018 after booking higher cloud and software revenue in the third quarter, even as profits inched lower.

SAP posted IFRS profit after tax attributable to owners of the parent of €973 million, or 82 cents per share, in the quarter ended Sept. 30, compared with €983 million, or 82 cents per share, in the year-ago period.

Total revenue rose 8% year over year to €6.02 billion from €5.59 billion, as cloud and software revenue climbed 7% to €5.01 billion while services revenue increased by 9% to €1.01 billion.

Operating profit slid 6% year over year to €1.24 billion from €1.31 billion as total operating expenses went up by 12%.

Citing strong cloud and overall business momentum, SAP raised its non-IFRS operating profit guidance to a range of €7.43 billion to €7.53 billion at constant currencies from the previous guidance of €7.40 billion to €7.50 billion. Non-IFRS total revenue is expected to come in at between €25.20 billion and €25.50 billion at constant currencies, up from the prior guidance of between €24.98 billion and €25.30 billion.

"Our growth drivers are firing on all cylinders," said CEO Bill McDermott. "With a stronger than ever [fourth-quarter] pipeline, we confidently raise our full-year guidance."

For 2020, SAP projects a non-IFRS operating profit range of €8.5 billion to €9.0 billion and a non-IFRS total revenue range of €28 billion to €29 billion.