Data analytics firm Palantir posts quarterly profit

Data analytics firm Palantir posts quarterly profit

Palantir chief Alexander Karp says in an annual letter from the data analytics firm that software has become 'a significant and often decisive lever on the battlefield' in Eastern Europe
Palantir chief Alexander Karp says in an annual letter from the data analytics firm that software has become 'a significant and often decisive lever on the battlefield' in Eastern Europe. Photo: Patrick T. Fallon / AFP
Source: AFP

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Secretive data analytics specialist Palantir Technologies on Monday announced its first profitable quarter since the US company was founded nearly 20 years ago.

Palantir reported a net income of $31 million in the final three months of last year on revenue that grew 18 percent to $509 million when compared with the same period a year earlier.

"With this result, Palantir is profitable," co-founder and chief executive Alexander Karp said in an earnings release.

"This is a significant moment for us and our supporters."

Shares in Denver-based Palantir climbed more than 15 percent to $8.80 in after-market trades that followed release of the earnings figures.

Founded in 2003 in response to the September 11, 2001 terror attacks, Palantir got initial funding from a CIA venture-capital unit.

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Its predictive analytics reportedly helped the US military locate Osama bin Laden and track weapons movements in the Middle East.

Its platform has also been used in the controversial practice of "predictive policing" to help law enforcement, detect medical insurance fraud and fight the coronavirus pandemic.

Palantir's name comes from the mystical, all-powerful seeing stone in "Lord of the Rings" and the company has drawn fire over its law enforcement and national security work.

While Palantir's data practices and algorithms are secret, the company claims it follows a roadmap which is, if anything, more ethical than its tech sector rivals.

"When we were just starting out, many doubted our ability to evolve beyond anything more than a specialty provider of software to a handful of government customers, let alone generate meaningful revenue from the government sector as a whole," Karp said in an annual letter to investors.

"They were wrong."

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Palantir became a publicly traded company in late 2020.

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Source: AFP

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