February 8, 2013 - 15:14 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - The online professional-networking service LinkedIn extended its uninterrupted streak of exceeding analysts’ projections for both earnings and revenue, AP reports.
This is the seventh consecutive quarter since LinkedIn’s initial public offering in May 2011 that the company has pulled that off. The run of pleasant surprises is one of the reasons that LinkedIn’s stock has tripled from its I.P.O. price of $45. After LinkedIn reported its fourth-quarter results, its shares surged $11.36, or 9.15 percent, to $135.45 in after-hours trading.
Besides a 66 percent increase in earnings from the previous year, the latest quarter was highlighted by an influx of 15 million accounts to propel LinkedIn’s total membership beyond 200 million. Visitors to LinkedIn’s Web site also viewed 67 percent more pages than the previous year, an indication that the company’s efforts to add more business news and career tips from top business executives are paying off.
LinkedIn earned $11.5 million, or 10 cents a share, during the final three months of last year. That compared to $6.9 million, or 6 cents a share, a year earlier.
If not for the costs of employee stock compensation and certain other charges, LinkedIn said it would have earned 35 cents a share. That was far above the average estimates of 19 cents per share among analysts surveyed by FactSet.
Revenue soared 81 percent from the previous year to $304 million — about $24 million above analyst forecasts.
LinkedIn’s revenue outlook for the current quarter and all of 2013 were roughly in line with analyst estimates, setting the stage for the company to clear those financial hurdles once again.
Management’s forecast for annual revenue of $1.4 billion this year appears conservative, given that it would translate into an increase of about 45 percent from last year. In 2012, LinkedIn’s annual revenue rose 86 percent.
“We are trying to utilize a prudent approach to year-over-year growth,” Steve Sordello, LinkedIn’s chief financial officer, told analysts in a conference call.