Cerner reports higher quarterly profits, strong bookings

Cerner Corp. on Thursday reported higher third-quarter profits and revenues, as customers continue to drive up orders for its health care information software.

The company based in North Kansas City earned $115.3 million in the quarter that ended Sept. 28, up from $98.9 million in the same quarter in 2012.

Revenue climbed 8 percent to $727.8 million, and bookings for business climbed 21 percent to a record third-quarter high of $928 million.

Though Cerner said revenue growth was below its expectations, earnings were in line with projections.

“In addition to our solid financial results, our third quarter included several very strategic clients wins,” Neal Patterson, Cerner’s chairman, chief executive and co-founder, said in a statement.

For the fourth quarter, Cerner said it expected revenue between $775 million and $815 million, and new business bookings between $1 billion and $1.1 billion.

Shares in Cerner closed at $57.76, down 24 cents. The company released its financial results after normal trading hours ended.

The company is benefiting from the growing use of computerized patient health records. Cerner provides health information technology to about 10,000 hospitals, doctor’s offices and other medical facilities around the world.

“Trends in health care costs are unsustainable, and information technology is the only remaining lever to pull that can change the current trajectory,” Patterson said.

The rapidly expanding company won Kansas City Council approval this month for tax incentives required to support a huge new office campus on the site of the former Bannister Mall.

Cerner has office campuses at its North Kansas City headquarters, at its new around-the-clock support center in Kansas City, Kan., and in the former Marion Laboratories facility in south Kansas City.

The company employs 9,000 in the Kansas City area, part of its global workforce of 13,000. In development plans submitted to the city, additional employment of up to 15,000 was projected for the Bannister office campus.