Snapchat Stock Soars on Revenue Gains


Will Snap Have More Bad News When It Reports Earnings?

It's now been almost a year since Snap went public, and it has been plagued by the same problems each quarter: slowing user growth, fierce competition from Instagram, and no clear path to profitability.

Snap's sales climbed to $285 million in the fourth quarter, up 72% from the same period a year earlier.

The company reported fourth-quarter results as Wall Street was looking for signs of life from an app that struggled at points previous year.

In related news, Director Mitchell Lasky sold 25,000 shares of the company's stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, November 21st.

The company also showed signs of accelerated user growth. Snapchat had not growing as quickly as investors had hoped, causing questions about the app's ability to attract a broad audience beyond is base of young, digital savvy users.

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Snapchat paid its publishing partners "more than $100 million" in revenue-sharing advertising deals past year, up from $58 million in 2016 and just $10 million in 2015, the company reported on Tuesday. This is the first time Snap has beat market expectations since going public past year. This represented 4.5 million new DAUs, or growth of about 17% year-over-year, but just 3% sequential growth. But the company's bet on Spectacles has been expensive, costing the company $40 million last quarter for "excess inventory". However, even if it hits that number, it would still represent the sixth straight quarter of year-over-year revenue growth deceleration.

"Our business really came together towards the end of a year ago", Spiegel said in remarks prepared for a conference call with analysts.

Another feather in Snap's cap: Average Revenue Per User, which came in well above the $1.36 ARPU analysts expected.

During Snap's third quarter earnings call, co-founder and CEO Spiegel acknowledged that Snapchat is harder to understand than he initially realized.

Snapchat has sought to distinguish itself from Facebook with a design that "separates social from media", according to Spiegel, who said this helps avoid "many of the problems that arise when friends are commingled with professional content creators". Snap Inc (SNAP) management said the Q4 2017 result was the best quarter for user adds since Q3 2016.

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