Shares of Cloudera (NYSE:CLDR) soared 24.1% in the month of September, according to data from S&P Global Market Intelligence, as the stock recovered from an early year swoon and the big data processing company reported expectation-beating second-quarter results.
Cloudera was coming off a rough first half of 2019, so its better-than-feared quarter gave sentiment around the stock a boost. Also helping was a big investment from Carl Icahn, who took an 18% stake in the company in July and received two board seats in August.
In the recently reported quarter, Cloudera reported revenue of $196.7 million, which beat estimates by $14.4 million, and an adjusted (non-GAAP) loss of just $0.02 per share, surpassing expectations by $0.08. Perhaps more importantly, the company also raised its full-year guidance to a range of $765 million to $775 million, up from a previous range of $745 million to $765 million.
There's been an improvement in its fortunes after the introduction of the Cloudera Data Platform in June, which adapts Cloudera's previously on-premises offering to the cloud in a software-as-a service model. Importantly, the Cloudera Data Platform works across the different public clouds, private clouds, and on-premises data centers, which the company is banking will lure customers away from the big cloud players, all of whom have their own in-house offerings.
Other highlights for the quarter include a small acquisition of Arcadia Data, a big data analytics company that accelerates the time it takes to glean insight, and an expanded partnership with IBM (NYSE:IBM), which management said yielded positive results in the quarter.
One point of speculation is that Icahn's presence may lead to a sale of the company. After all, Cloudera's private competitor MapR was scooped up by HP Enterprise (NYSE:HPE) in August. On the earnings release, Cloudera's management said it had adopted the open source licensing model set by Red Hat, which management praised as the industry's best practice regarding open-source technology. Red Hat was, of course, acquired by IBM this year, and Cloudera would make for a much smaller and digestible acquisition.
But even if there is no sale of the company, Cloudera looks to be rebounding from a year-long swoon, as it counterpunches against the cloud giants. Just remember that while Cloudera has a lot of potential, it is still a bit risky, as it's up against some very big competitors.