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Infosys Announces Fiscal Q1 2014 Revenue Up 13.6% to $1,991m

An encouraging quarter for Infosys after the disappointment of missing guidance last quarter.

It is not possible to determine the precise level of organic growth (excluding Lodestone) as Infosys is folding some of its consulting capabilities into Lodestone Consulting: this has happened already in the U.K. and is occurring now in the U.S. and Germany; the incremental $20m in revenue contributed by Lodestone this quarter ($90m, up from $70m last quarter) also includes a benefit from a change in accounting policy for revenue recognition. Nevertheless, we estimate organic revenue growth is around 9%, making it Infosys’ best quarter since Q4 FY 2012. Infosys management referred on several occasions to being ‘cautiously optimistic’ for FY 2014, though maintaining the 6% to 10% revenue growth guidance. We expect this guidance to be refined slightly by end fiscal H1

Looking at some of the service lines:

  • Both applications development and application management have had their best quarter of topline growth for a year, though still far short of the double digit growth that Infosys used to enjoy
  • Testing and infrastructure services continue to see double digit growth but at 15% of group revenue are not the growth engines, accounting for just 20% of the y/y growth this quarter
  • Over 60% of the growth was from consulting and systems integration, mainly due to Lodestone, though revenues are also starting to come through from the 12 month $49.5m contract to build a health exchange for the District of Columbia. Management incidentally commented that there is likely to be less opportunity than it had anticipated for similar work to support other states’ health exchanges because of states opting for the federal exchange
  • It is pleasing to see BPO back to growth; last quarter’s negative growth appears to have been a blip.

In terms of geographies, the U.S. continues to outperform Europe, which, excluding Lodestone, is achieving minimal y/y growth (we estimate under 2%) and was down 3% sequentially. This is attributed to being a consequence of some projects coming to an end, though clearly bookings to replace these fell short. Lodestone will clearly bring revenue synergy opportunities to Infosys and should ultimately boost the European business in those countries in which it operates. In the U.K., where Lodestone does not have a presence, and where Infosys has folded its consulting business into Lodestone, it will take longer for this type of benefit to be seen. The recent (from May 1) 8% wage hike for the global sales force was an important boost: when Infosys recruits a new global head of sales, it will be interesting to see what the geographic priorities are.

Management highlighted both some of the uncertainties, e.g. currency volatility, that led to the decision not to provide margin guidance, also the various levers being applied to offset impacts such as wage rises, price sensitivity in rebids, costs in the ramp up stages of large outsourcing deals, and also to drive margin growth. Key among these is improving utilization to the 78% to 82% target range, which Infosys seems confident of achieving.  Slightly less was made by management of improving productivity through increased automation and reuse, though Infosys is working on this in its BITS service lines.

TTM attrition is the highest it has been for over two years; presumably the wage hikes from July 1 will go some way to address this.

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