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NetApp Rises as Profit Beats Estimates, Expands Buyback

Nov. 15 (Bloomberg) -- NetApp Inc. surged the most in more than two years after second-quarter profit beat estimates and the maker of data-storage products expanded its share repurchase program by $1.5 billion.

The shares of Sunnyvale, California-based NetApp advanced 11 percent to $30.20 at the close in New York, the biggest gain since May 2010. The stock pared its loss for the year to 17 percent.

Earnings excluding some items for the fiscal second quarter, which ended Oct. 26, were 51 cents a share, the company said in a statement. That topped analysts’ average projection of 48 cents, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. NetApp forecast third-quarter profit of 53 cents to 58 cents a share, compared with a 54-cent average estimate.

“Management clearly executed well through a challenging macro environment in which we expected to see more of an adverse impact on results than was the case,” Maynard Um, an analyst at Wells Fargo Securites, wrote in a research report. “The quarter should, for the time being, alleviate concerns that competition is having a meaningful impact on NetApp as product gross margin improved.”

NetApp also said it agreed to buy CacheIQ Inc., a closely held storage solutions company based in Austin, Texas. Terms weren’t disclosed.

To contact the reporter on this story: Lisa Rapaport in New York at lrapaport1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Tom Giles at tgiles5@bloomberg.net

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