Vmark and Unidata merger coughs up a loss

Even if marriage may be bliss, weddings can be costly affairs. Ardent Software, the company resulting from last year's merger between Vmark and Unidata, has recorded a first-quarter loss of nearly $US10 million despite slightly higher income for the same period last year. The loss arises mainly from Vmark's desire to write off the merger costs in one quarter, says Ardent's Asia-Pacific general manager, Trevor Gray.

Even if marriage may be bliss, weddings can be costly affairs. Ardent Software, the company resulting from last year's merger between Vmark and Unidata, has recorded a first-quarter loss of nearly $US10 million despite slightly higher income for the same period last year.

Ardent made a net loss of $US9,357,000 for the first quarter of 1998, including the merger-related charge of $US14,895,000, on revenue of $US25,710,000. The result compares to a loss of $US535,000 in the first quarter of 1997 for the combined data management company, on revenue of $US23,794,000, restated after the merger.

However, the loss arises mainly from Vmark's desire to write off the merger costs in one quarter, says Ardent's Asia-Pacific general manager, Trevor Gray, and the company is healthy - while the regional arm is doing"extremely well". He says revenue for the first quarter in the region is expected to be about $US2.1 million, up about 30% on the last quarter of 1997.

Australia and New Zealand contribute about 70% of Asia-Pacific revenues at present, says Gray, although he believes Ardent's data warehousing tools, such as DataStage, will "open up large markets in Asia". Gray expects the company's object technology to be accepted faster in some areas of Asia, such as Japan and Korea, than in Australasia. Ardent products also include the UniVerse, 02 and UniData RDBMSs.

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