How Glu Dominated Earnings Despite Weak Guidance

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Glu Mobile Inc. (NASDAQ: GLUU) reported its fourth-quarter financial results after the markets closed on Wednesday. The company had $0.02 in earnings per share (EPS) on $57.9 million in revenue. That compared to consensus estimates calling for a net loss of $0.03 per share on $49.8 million in revenue.

In terms of first-quarter guidance, the company expects a net loss in the range of $0.06 to $0.05 per share on revenues in the range of $46.0 million to $48 million. The consensus estimates are a net loss of $0.04 per share and $55.62 million in revenue.

Glu extended its celebrity gaming platform this quarter via a multiyear, exclusive gaming partnership with Taylor Swift, who is the most followed woman in the world with over 220 million social media followers. This is a huge addition to Glu’s celebrity gaming partnerships, which now totals roughly 1.3 billion social followers.

Niccolo de Masi, chairman and CEO of Glu, commented on earnings:

Our ability to exceed revenue and EBITDA expectations in Q4 was driven by the ongoing traction of our catalog titles, including the continued solid performance of Kim Kardashian: Hollywood, Cooking Dash 2016, Racing Rivals and Deer Hunter 2016. During the quarter we hired new studio leadership, with Tim Wilson joining as our Global CTO and Nick Earl as our President of Global Studios. Nick and Tim have hit the ground running and have already begun evolving our global studios. We anticipate that our global studio improvements will significantly enhance Glu’s product delivery on a go forward basis.

On the books, Glu had cash and cash equivalents of $180.5 million, compared to $182.3 million at the end of the prior quarter. This company continues to have no debt. Cash flows generated from operations were $139,000 for the fourth quarter of 2015, compared to $19.3 million for the fourth quarter of 2014.

Shares of Glu closed Wednesday down 2.9% at $2.01, with a consensus analyst price target of $4.11 and a 52-week trading range of $1.98 to $7.03. Following the release of the earnings report, shares were up about 22% at $2.45 in early trading indications Thursday.