As I write this, shares of my favorite cybersecurity stock are climbing on record-breaking fiscal fourth-quarter results.
The stock I’m referring to is Palo Alto Networks (PANW), which is a leading provider of enterprise security platforms to businesses, service providers and governmental organizations around the world.
Palo Alto Networks develops and markets security products like firewalls, website blockers and mobile security managers. The company also offers education services, support services and consulting services to ensure that clients get the most out of their security products. In total, Palo Alto Networks has over 26,000 customers.
Those products and services have been in hot demand recently. Compared with Q4 2014, revenue grew 59% to $283.9 million. The consensus was for $256.3 million in revenue, so Palo Alto posted a 10.7% sales surprise.
Over the same period, adjusted earnings nearly tripled from $9.1 million a year ago to $25.0 million, or $0.28 per share. Analysts were calling for $0.25 EPS, so Palo Alto Networks posted a healthy 12% earnings surprise.
Palo Alto Networks also provided its guidance for the next quarter. For the fiscal first quarter, the company expects to bring in between $280 million and $284 million in revenue, or between 46% and 48% annual sales growth. The company also expects adjusted EPS between $0.31 and $0.32, or between 107% and 113% annual earnings growth.
This guidance is on the higher end of the Street view, which calls for $0.31 EPS on $269.6 million in revenue. As a result, PANW shares climbed higher after hours and will likely open higher for tomorrow’s session. PANW is an A-rated Strong Buy in Portfolio Grader.