June 29, 2017

Twitter smashes analyst predictions as number of users soars

27 April 2017, 02:24 | Ignacio Smith

The microblogging service said average monthly active users increased 6% to 328m in the first quarter from a year earlier.

But Twitter, which has made efforts to become profitable this year, reported a net loss of $62 million in the first quarter, a decrease of 23 percent compared to the same period last year.

Twitter also highlighted growth in another key metric, monthly active users (MAU), which rose by 9 million from the prior quarter to 328 million.

Twitter shares jumped with Wednesday's filing, opening trading at $15.90 a share.

Twitter recently released its quarterly report and contrary to expectations from most financial pundits, the company has actually managed to register an increase in various aspects.

A tweet from Twitter's investor relations arm noted that "we continue to expect revenue growth to meaningfully lag audience growth in 2017".

In Q1, Twitter said, it streamed more than 800 hours of live video from content partners across more than 450 events, reaching 45 million unique viewers.

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Twitter has never turned a profit, and for the first time since going public in 2013, it reported a decline in revenue from the previous year.

Twitter says that Trump is not the only reason Twitter growth improved last quarter.

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

The challenge now seems to be continuing to convince advertisers that Twitter can help them leverage that attention with their advertising products. Monthly users rose to 328 million, by as much as 6% as compared to the same month from past year and by 9 million from the last quarter. Analysts were lukewarm on Twitter's prospects heading into the quarterly results, underlining significant revenue headwinds.

"Twitter needs an about face on how it approaches both the user and monetization sides of the business", said James Cakmak, an analyst with Moness, Crespi, Hardt & an investor note.

That's not exactly a small number of people but it pales in comparison to the almost two billion people that use Facebook, the 700 million that are now on Instagram and the 500 million over on Microsoft's LinkedIn.

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