Micro Focus Shares Plummet Over Revenue Warning

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Shares traded as much as 56 percent down amidst lower-than-expected turnover and the departure of chief executive Chris Tsu

Shares in Micro Focus International, the UK’s largest tech company, dropped in value by as much as half in afternoon trading on Monday after the company announced a greater than expected fall in revenues and said its chief executive would leave the company.

The FTSE 100-listed company saw its shares close 42 percent lower, having traded as much as 56 percent below their opening price during the course of the day.

Micro Focus said turnover for fiscal 2018 is set to be down 6 to 9 percent, rather than the 2 to 4 percent it had earlier forecast.

It said the drop was due to difficulties integrating the software division of HP Enterprise (HPE), which Micro Focus bought for £6.8 billion in a deal that was completed last September.

Chief executive departure

The acquisition incidentally saw it acquire scandal-hit UK software firm Autonomy, which had earlier been acquired by HPE.

As part of that deal, Chris Hsu, who formerly led the HPE software unit, became Micro Focus’ chief executive, but the firm said Hsu is now leaving the company with immediate effect to “spend more time with his family and pursue another opportunity”.

Current chief operating officer Stephen Murdoch is to take over the chief executive role.

Micro Focus’ executive chairman, Kevin Loosemore, said he remained confident in the company’s long-term strategy.

“(We have) no regrets… but the returns clearly may be delayed slightly,” Loosemore told Reuters.

The company said its cost savings drive is ahead of schedule and it expects this to offset other losses.

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