RALEIGH – Red Hat’s latest financials topped Wall Street analysts’ expectations, sending RHT shares spiking upward to a record high in after-hours trading.

The news comes on the 25th anniversary of the company’s founding in 1993 by Bob Young and Marc Ewing who moved the firm to Durham in 1996.

The positive financials come just a week after Bloomberg News reported that Google might be interested in acquiring Red Hat as part of a strategy to improve its cloud business. Red Hat is a growing provider of cloud computing services and support.

The Raleigh-based open source and Linux software and services conglomerate reported revenues of$772.3 million for the most recent quarter, topping forecasts by just over $10 million.

Revenues surged 23 percent year-over-year, setting the Hatters on the course for almost $3 billion this year.

Earnings also improved, hitting 91 cents a year, some 10 cents higher than expected.

Adding to the good news, Red Hate forecast quarterly revenues for the current 3-month period to hit between $800 million to $810 million, and full-year revenue looks to top $3.4 billion.

RHT closed at $153.12, up 5.2 percent, on the day Monday. Shares jumped more than 6 percent minutes after the financials were disclosed to a new 52-week high of more than $162.

That’s also a record high for the stock, according to Google Finance data. Red Hat shares hit $136 in 1999 during the “dot com” bubble. Shares topped that price last month and have continued to climb.

“The fourth quarter was a strong finish to the year for Red Hat. We maintained strong subscription revenue growth in both of our major technology categories during the year, enabling Red Hat to exceed a $3 billion annualized revenue run-rate exiting the year,” CEO Jim Whitehurst said in a statement.

“Red Hat continued to expand its position with customers as a trusted adviser and strategic technology partner, enabling initiatives focused on digital transformation and cloud computing. This position helped drive a 50% year-over-year increase in the number of deals over $1 million during the fourth quarter, as we benefited from strong cross selling and high renewal rates within our top deals.”

In its earnings announcement, red Hat pointed to a variety of positive news:

  • Fourth quarter subscription revenue of $683 million, up 22% year-over-year, or 18% in constant currency; full fiscal year subscription revenue of $2.6 billion, up 21% year-over-year, or 19% in constant currency
  • Year-end deferred revenue balance of $2.6 billion, up 25% year-over-year
  • Fourth quarter operating cash flow of $362 million, up 14% year-over-year; full fiscal year operating cash flow of $923 million, up 18% year-over-year