Vocus Plunges on Full-Year Revenue Forecast

Vocus Inc. dropped the most in 11 months after projecting full-year sales that trailed analysts’ estimates as the maker of public-relations software works to integrate a new business.

The shares fell 14 percent to $15.32 at the close in New York, the biggest one-day decline since Feb. 29. Vocus had dropped 25 percent in the 12 months through yesterday compared with a 1.6 percent gain for the Russell 3000 Technology Index.

Vocus has revamped its business model and acquired an e- mail marketing business in the past year, leaving investors unsure about how to gauge revenue growth, said Steven Ashley, an analyst with Robert W. Baird & Co. in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

“You have two currents going on -- the old business being weaker, and the new business being stronger,” Ashley, who recommends investors hold the shares, said today in an interview. “Business model transitions take a while. They’re bumpy. We’re a good way through.”

Revenue for 2013 may increase as much as 17 percent to $201.8 million, Beltsville, Maryland-based Vocus said in a statement yesterday. Analysts projected $208 million, the average of estimates compiled by Bloomberg.

On Feb. 28, 2012, Vocus announced it had acquired iContact, a provider of e-mail and social-marketing software, for $169 million. The next day, the stock plunged 40 percent amid concern over the company having spent more than 80 percent of its cash for the purchase.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jeanna Smialek in Washington at jsmialek1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Cecile Daurat at cdaurat@bloomberg.net

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