Twitter shares soar on strongest user growth for more than a year


27 April, 2017

The company said daily active usage increased 14% year-over-year, the fourth consecutive quarter of accelerating growth, but didn't disclose actual figures for its average daily user base. But Twitter showed signs of new life in the first quarter, reporting that average monthly active users rose six per cent from a year ago to 328 million.

Net loss was $61.6 million, or 9 cents per share, compared with a loss of $79.7 million, or 12 cents per share, a year earlier.

Twitter shares were up more than 11% in pre-market trading Wednesday over the previous closing price of $14.66.

Monthly users were on the up, climbing six per cent on the same quarter past year and almost three per cent on the previous quarter to 328m. More users, of course, mean more advertising revenue for the companies, since businesses try to reach as many eyeballs as possible.

The company said monthly users - a key statistic for social media companies - grew by 6pc in the first quarter of the year, the fastest for two years.

According to the struggling company, it gained 9 million users in the first quarter of 2017, growing by 3% from 319 million users to 328 million. Twitter says it has signed more than 200 content partners to date.

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Twitter reported first-quarter revenue of $548.3 million (down 8% annually) and adjusted EPS of $0.11 (down $0.04 annually), easily topping consensus analyst estimates of $511.9 million and $0.01. The company also introduced an update that makes it easier for users to follow conversations and replies in late March.

User growth "could be your first indicator that revenue could recover some day", said Mark Mahaney, an analyst at RBC Capital Markets.

"I think that Trump drives a lot of awareness about Twitter among people who otherwise wouldn't be paying attention", said Michael Pachter, managing director at Wedbush Securities.

Twitter announced its quarterly earnings today, showing better-than-expected yet still declining earnings and revenue.

Twitter is also doing a better job as rolling out new products, and meeting the needs of average users, said Dorsey. Analysts had been looking for earnings of 2 cents per share and $517 million in revenue.

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