Snap jumps as 1st-quarter revenue beats expectations and guidance surges

Evan Spiegel, Snap
Snap’s CEO Evan Spiegel.

  • Snap shares rose more than 6% early Friday following the company’s first-quarter financial report.
  • The social media platform posted breakeven adjusted earnings compared with the loss estimate of $0.06 per share from Refinitiv.
  • Snap forecasts a rise of at least 81% in second-quarter revenue to $820 million.
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Snap shares were propelled higher Friday after the social media site turned in first-quarter financial results that surpassed Wall Street’s targets and set its sight on a jump in revenue.

The company late Thursday posted breakeven earnings per share on an adjusted basis compared with a loss of $0.06 per share in a consensus estimate from Refinitiv. A year ago, Snap lost $0.08 per share.

Revenue leapt by 66% to $769.6 million from $462.5 million a year earlier, beating analyst expectations of $743.8 million. The company said its active advertiser base about doubled from the year-ago period and that it delivered positive free cash flow for the first time as a public company.

Shares rose 6.6% to $60.80 early Friday. The stock has picked up about 14% this year and has more than tripled from $16 over the past 12 months.

Snap forecast second-quarter revenue of $820 million to $840 million, which would represent growth of 81% to 85% from $454 million in the year-ago period. Analysts, on average, currently anticipate $827 million.

In the first quarter, global daily active users rose by 51% to 280 million, higher than the Refinitiv estimate of 274.6 million users. Snap also said for the first time that the majority of its daily active users for the quarter were on the Android version of its app.

“We have a large opportunity to gain share of the global digital ad market, which is $340 billion and growing,” said Jeremi Gorman, Snap’s chief business officer, during the company’s earnings call. She said the company is focused on three priorities: investing in its ad platform, scaling its sales and marketing functions to support advertising partners worldwide, and building ad experiences through video and augmented reality.

Social platforms, especially over the past year, have been increasing focus on e-commerce, said Scott Kessler, global sector lead for technology, media and telecommunications at Third Bridge, in a note.

“The recent acquisition of Fit Analytics could help Snap in the fashion area, and ultimately challenge Pinterest, where the latter has had success with its “try on” feature in the beauty category,” he said.

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