Demand for Accenture's consulting services has pushed up the firm's revenue, sending the share price higher in the pre-market

Billy Bambrough
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Accenture has been working to improve the website used in the US to sign people up for health insurance (Source: Getty)

An up-swing in Accenture's consulting business has helped the company beat analyst expectations in its third quarter.

The Dublin-based company reported a better-than-expected 8.6 per cent rise in quarterly revenue to $8.43bn (£6.44bn) from $7.77bn in the same period last year.

Net income rose to $897.2m, or $1.41 per share, for the three months to the end of May, up from $793.7m, a year earlier.

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The numbers sent Accenture shares up by 0.63 per cent in the pre-market, adding to gains of around 20 per cent in the last 12 months.

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Analysts polled by Reuters on average had expected a profit of $1.41 per share and revenue of $8.34bn.

The lower end of the outlook for the fourth quarter came in a little under analyst average estimates however.

Accenture is forecasting fourth-quarter revenue of between $8.25bn and $8.50bn. Analysts were expecting revenue of $8.39bn.

Read more: Why are so many women leaving the consulting game?

The company recorded a rise in sales across most divisions with growth of 15 per cent in its products unit, its largest, and 11 per cent growth in its health and public services unit.

Net revenue from Accenture's consulting business, which accounts for a little more than half of total revenue, rose 12.4 per cent in the third quarter.

Revenue from the company's outsourcing business rose 4.2 per cent.

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