Services revenues brighten Unisys gloom

Unisys is citing good services order growth as a highpoint in what has been a poor first quarter of the year.

Unisys is citing good services order growth as a highpoint in what has been a poor first quarter of the year.

For the first quarter of 2005, Unisys posted a net loss of $45.5m (£23.8m) compared with a net profit of $28.9m in the same quarter of 2004.

The 2005 results include a “pre-tax pension expense” of $46.8m, compared with a similar charge of $22.2m in the first quarter of 2004. Excluding the pension expense from both quarters would produce a first quarter loss of $13.7m in 2005 and a net profit of $44m a year earlier.

Revenues were also disappointing. The figure for the first quarter of 2005 was $1.37bn - 7% lower than the same period in 2004.

Conceding it was a tough quarter, Unisys president and CEO Joseph McGrath said it was not all doom. “We did make progress on several important fronts. We were pleased by good services order growth in the quarter, driven by substantial double-digit order gains for outsourcing services. Overall, we signed multi-year annuity contracts with an estimated total value of more than $400m in the quarter."

These include a $143m contract to provide desktop support services on an outsourced basis, a $90m 10-year contract to provide insurance processing services for Resolution Life, a $77m contract to provide infrastructure outsourcing services, and a $22m five-year contract to provide infrastructure outsourcing services.

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