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The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: IBM, Oracle, salesforce.com, SAP and Chevron
By: PR Newswire
Dec. 7, 2012 09:30 AM
CHICAGO, Dec. 7, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Zacks.com announces the list of stocks featured in the Analyst Blog. Every day the Zacks Equity Research analysts discuss the latest news and events impacting stocks and the financial markets. Stocks recently featured in the blog include International Business Machines Corp. (NYSE:IBM), Oracle Corp. (Nasdaq:ORCL), salesforce.com (NYSE:CRM), SAP AG (NYSE:SAP) and Chevron Corporation (NYSE:CVX).
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Here are highlights from Thursday's Analyst Blog:
IBM Closes Kenexa Buy
International Business Machines Corp. (NYSE:IBM) has completed the $1.3 billion acquisition of Kenexa. IBM had agreed to buy Kenexa in August 2012. Kenexa develops software that helps enterprises manage human resources ("HR"). Its HR solutions are widely popular and its strong client base consists of approximately 8,900 customers across a number of industries.
The Kenexa acquisition will further expand IBM's business analytics software offerings going forward. The acquisition is a major strategic move by IBM to bolster its position in the cloud based software-as-a-service ("SaaS") market. SaaS is a software delivery method that enables data access from any device with an Internet connection and web browser. In this web-based model, software vendors host and maintain servers, databases and codes that constitute an application.
Moreover, demand for SaaS-based products has been on the rise for some time and is expected to increase manifold because of some inherent benefits associated with the platform. Applications delivered over the SaaS platform not only allow enterprises to start using them instantly, but they are also more cost effective compared to traditional products installed at a customer's onsite data center. Software updates are also smoother.
IBM is already a leader in enterprise social software, according to IDC. Moreover, IBM's solutions cater to approximately 60% of the fortune 100 companies. We believe that the growth prospects in the SaaS segment is the primary factor attracting IT giants, such as IBM, Oracle Corp. (Nasdaq:ORCL), salesforce.com (NYSE:CRM) and SAP AG (NYSE:SAP). Both SAP and Oracle enjoy a leading position in the SaaS-based application market based on a number of acquisitions (SuccessFactors, Ariba, RightNow, Taleo) in the recent past.
We believe that IBM's entrance into the cloud-based HR solutions market will intensify competition going forward. Although it is very difficult to predict a clear winner among these companies considering the depth of their product portfolios and diversified customer base, we believe that IBM has an advantage due to its strong balance sheet. IBM intends to spend $20 billion on acquisitions up to 2015.
Thus, we remain Neutral over the long term. Currently, IBM has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).
Chevron Unveils $36.7B Capex Budget
U.S. energy behemoth Chevron Corporation (NYSE:CVX) offered a glimpse of its 2013 capital spending plans. The integrated major said that it will boost its capital expenditures by about $4 billion in 2013, as the company allocates the bulk of funds toward the 'Exploration & Production' segment, while continuing to be cautious about the amount of resources it devotes to the refining business. Chevron's focus on the upstream business can be attributed to its strong portfolio of pipeline projects.
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About Zacks Equity Research
Zacks Equity Research provides the best of quantitative and qualitative analysis to help investors know what stocks to buy and which to sell for the long-term.
Continuous coverage is provided for a universe of 1,150 publicly traded stocks. Our analysts are organized by industry which gives them keen insights to developments that affect company profits and stock performance. Recommendations and target prices are six-month time horizons.
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