Software firm Palantir boosts revenue view on commercial strength
Feb 17 (Reuters) – Palantir Technologies (PLTR.N) forecast current-quarter sales above estimates on Thursday, after a steady flow of government contracts and a growing commercial portfolio boosted the data analytics software firm’s fourth-quarter revenue.
Known for its work with the U.S. Army, the Central Intelligence Agency and other government bodies, Palantir’s next leg of growth is widely expected to come from commercial contracts with large businesses.
The company, which provides its software only to the United States and “its allies”, tripled its commercial customer count to 147 customers in 2021, driven by deals with brands including Ferrari, Kinder Morgan (KMI.N) and IBM (IBM.N).
“You are starting to see that the U.S. commercial business is starting to dominate the business. Two years ago, it was 6% of revenue and now it is 13% of the revenue,” Chief Operating Officer Shyam Sankar told Reuters in an interview.
The company forecast first-quarter revenue of $443 million. Analysts on average expect $439.2 million, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.
Palantir, backed by tech billionaire Peter Thiel, said fourth-quarter revenue rose 34% to $432.9 million, also surpassing expectations.
However, experts have raised concerns over Palantir’s reliance on large deals with a few customers, including its dependence on government contracts, which make its revenue flow uncertain.
Addressing the concerns, COO Sankar said the company’s net dollar retention rate reveals the “stickiness” of its software with customers.
Palantir disclosed the metric for the first time in its results statement on Thursday, reporting a net dollar retention rate of 131% in fiscal 2021 with a 150% rate in its U.S. commercial business.
Net loss in the quarter ended Dec. 31 was $156.2 million, or 8 cents per share, compared with a loss of $148.3 million, or 8 cents per share, a year earlier.
Reporting by Chavi Mehta in Bengaluru; Editing by Devika Syamnath