UPDATE 1-India's Wipro forecasts weaker-than-expected revenue

Last Updated: Fri, Apr 19, 2013 04:50 hrs

* Sees Q1 IT services business revenue $1.58 bln-$1.61 bln

* Q4 net profit 17.29 bln rupees vs 14.81 bln rupees year ago (Adds forecast, details)

By Harichandan Arakali

BANGALORE, April 19 (Reuters) - Wipro Ltd, India's third-largest software services provider, forecast on Friday weaker-than-expected revenue for the June quarter, including a possible decline in revenue.

Wipro, whose customers include Citigroup Inc and Apple Inc, projected first-quarter revenue for its IT services business to be in a range of $1.58 billion to $1.61 billion - a decline of 0.6 percent to a rise of 1.6 percent over the previous quarter. That compares with a rise of 1 to 4 percent that analysts were expecting.

In its fourth quarter ended March 31, consolidated net profit rose 17 percent to 17.29 billion rupees ($320 million) from 14.81 billion rupees a year earlier, Wipro said.

That was in line with the 17 billion rupee average of 19 brokerage estimates according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. Fourth-quarter revenue rose 13 percent to 96.1 billion rupees. Revenue for discontinued operations was 14.12 billion rupees.

Wipro is the last of India's major software services providers to report results for the latest quarter.

Industry leader Tata Consultancy Services Ltd on Wednesday reported profits that were roughly in line with estimates and said the company would grow faster than the industry in the current fiscal year.

Second-ranked Infosys on April 11 missed expectations with a full-year dollar-revenue forecast of 6-10 percent. That dimmed investor hopes that it will soon benefit from a strategic revamp aimed at boosting revenue from software products and consultancy-led services.

On Wednesday, fourth-ranked HCL Technologies Ltd reported March quarter profits and revenue that beat analysts' estimates after it cut staff for the second quarter in a row.

Shares of Wipro did not trade on Friday because Indian financial markets were closed for a public holiday. (Aditional reporting by Prashant Mehra and writing by Aradhana Aravindan; Editing by Chris Gallagher)

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