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Acxiom Corporation (ACXM - Analyst Report) reported diluted earnings per share of 21 cents in the fiscal second quarter of 2013 (ended September 30, 2012) compared with 19 cents in the previous-year quarter and 17 cents in the previous quarter, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 15 cents.

Revenues

Total revenue came in at $277.5 million; down 3.1% from the last year quarter and 2.1% sequentially, although the revenue in the quarter exceeded the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $275 million.

The Marketing and Data Services segment sales decreased slightly by 0.7% year over year to $194.4 million. The company’s IT Infrastructure Management segment fell around 5% annually to reach $70.1 million. Other Services revenues dropped nearly 23% year over year to $13 million in the quarter.

Margins

Operating margin for the quarter came in at 10.9% versus 9.4% in the previous year quarter and 9.4% in the last quarter. The annual rise in margin was driven by the company’s IT infrastructure management segment and improved international operations.

Marketing and Data Services operating margin was 12.0% compared to 13.8% in the previous year quarter. The IT Infrastructure Management segment produced an operating margin of 12.2%, rising from 6.9% in the second quarter of fiscal 2012. Other Services operating margin came in at (12.4%) versus (15.7%) in the previous year quarter.

Balance Sheet and Cash Flows

Acxiom ended the quarter with cash and cash equivalents of $188.4 million, rising from $179.3 million at the end of the previous quarter. Net trade accounts receivable came in at $166.7 million, rising from $172.5 million at the end of the first quarter of fiscal 2013.

Long-term debt came in at $244.3 million, falling from $248.6 million at the end of the previous quarter. Deferred revenues came in at $47.4 million, falling from $52.6 million at the end of the previous quarter of fiscal 2013.

The net cash provided by operating activities was $39.2 million during the second quarter of fiscal 2013 compared to $57.7 million in the previous year quarter. Capital expenditures incurred came in at $8.2 million versus $12.1 million in the year-ago quarter.

Share Repurchase

In the reported quarter, the company repurchased 800,000 shares worth $14 million. A total of 9 million shares were bought back by Acxiom for $115 million since August 2011.

Outlook

For fiscal 2013, management expects that the revenue would either remain consistent or go down compared with the prior year.

The company raised its earnings per share guidance from 60 cents – 65 cents to 70 cents for the full year of fiscal 2013.

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