Parexel boosts revenue with eyes on a $1.9B year

CRO giant Parexel ($PRXL) is back on the up and up after a brief stumble in the fall, swinging to another profit as new business flows in.

The CRO's service revenue came in at $492.4 million on the quarter, about 8% above the same period last year. Parexel's sizable clinical research segment led the way, growing 9% to $373.2 million, while its recently rebranded informatics business jumped 9% to $67.3 million and its consulting branch ticked up 2% to $51.8 million. The company's net income leapt 18% to $34.7 million on the quarter.

Now Parexel is again raising its guidance for full-year revenue, expecting about $1.9 billion in fiscal 2014, good for roughly 12% growth. And the CRO is making good pace to get there, CEO Josef von Rickenbach said, picking up net new business of $572.9 million on the quarter with a book-to-bill ratio of 1-2 and a nearly $5 billion backlog.

"We are experiencing positive momentum in the marketplace, especially with mid and small clients, and we have successfully captured new business from all market segments," von Rickenbach said in a statement. "Our ongoing strategic operational initiatives across all of our service offerings, combined with our healthy backlog, give us confidence in the company's outlook for the future."

Parexel is in the midst of a sweeping rebranding effort through which the Boston company is looking to better entrench itself in the high-stakes competition between the largest players in an increasingly top-heavy market. The goal is to better establish Parexel's disparate offerings as a continuum of services, Rickenbach has said, and the CRO has retitled its banner eClinical business to bear the company's name.

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