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LinkedIn sees rebound in March quarter, raises full-year outlook

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LinkedIn sees rebound in March quarter, raises full-year outlook

LinkedIn Corp.on April 28 delivered first-quarter numbers that impressed the Street and analysts,departing from the woes the company has faced in recent months.

Revenue for the March quarter clocked in at $860.7 million, a35% year-over-year increase from $637.7 million in the 2015 March quarter.

The revenue increase is a welcome change for the company, whichsaw its stock price plummetafter its fourth-quarter 2015 earnings report. LinkedInshares were up about 7.5% in after-hours trading April 28 after the company reportedits first-quarter results.

The company's adjusted EBITDA for the quarter came in at $222.2million for the quarter, up from $159.9 million in the year-ago period.

Across segments, the company saw year-over-year increase in revenue.Talent Solutions, comprised of Hiring and Learning & Development, made up thelion's share of the company's revenue with $557.6 million for the quarter, up from$396.4 million in the year-ago quarter.

"The focus remains on our core Recruiter product and thefocus remains on our enterprise customers, our largest enterprise customers andthere's still multiple billions of dollars of head room there in terms of the immediateaddressable," said Jeffrey Weiner, LinkedIn CEO, in a same-day earnings call."That will continue to be the focus. That will continue to be the core of ourTalent Solutions efforts."

Marketing Solutions and Premium Subscriptions trailed behindwith $154.1 million and $148.9 million in revenue, respectively, for the 2016 firstquarter. Marketing Solutions' 29% year-over-year growth was driven in large partby Sponsored Content, which posted an 80% year-over-year growth rate. The increasein sponsored content eased the transition from Premium Display, which saw a 30%year-over-year decline and now makes up about 10% of Marketing Solutions.

Premium Subscriptions was driven by the growth of Sales Solutions,which saw a 55% year-over-year growth and comprises 40% of the segment's revenue.

The company's focus is still on long-term growth, with Weineremphasizing the success of the company's Recruiter product — the foundation to thecompany's long-term growth. The number of candidates per search is up 40%, Weinertold analysts.

By region, domestic growth continued to drive revenue as thecompany reported $526.4 million in U.S. revenue compared to $334.2 million in internationalrevenue. LinkedIn's Europe, the Middle East and Africa region made up the most ofthe international segment with $217.6 million in revenue, up from $156.6 millionin the year-ago period. Asia-Pacific revenue came in at $71.3 million for the quarter,up from $53.8 million in the March 2015 quarter. The Asia-Pacific region is stillbeing impacted by foreign exchange and China, executives told analysts on the call.The company recently passed 20 million members in China, not including growth inthe localized mobile app launched in China.

The company's first-quarter net loss attributable to common stockholderscame in at $45.8 million, or 35 cents per share, compared to a year-ago loss of$42.5 million, or 34 cents per share. First-quarter non-GAAP net income was $99.5million, or 74 cents per share, up from $72.5 million, or 57 cents per share, ayear ago.

The S&P Global Market Intelligence consensus estimate forthe just-ended quarter was 60 cents per share on a normalized basis and a loss of65 cents on a GAAP basis.

Looking ahead, the company expects second-quarter revenue of$885 million to $890 million, adjusted EBITDA of $225 million to $230 million andnon-GAAP EPS of 74 cents to 77 cents.

For full year 2016, revenue is expected to be between $3.65 billionand $3.7 billion, with adjusted EBITDA of $985 million to $1.01 billion. LinkedInpreviously expected full-year revenue of $3.6 billion to $3.65 billion and adjustedEBITDA of $950 million to $975 million.

The company now expects full-year non-GAAP EPS of $3.30 to $3.40,up from its earlier guidance of non-GAAP EPS of $3.05 to $3.20.