How Yelp Won Big in Q1

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Yelp Inc. (NYSE: YELP) released its most recent quarterly report after markets closed Thursday. The online restaurant reviewer said that it had a net loss of $0.03 per share on $223.07 million in revenue, compared with consensus estimates that called for a net loss of $0.04 per share on $220.14 million in revenue. The first quarter from last year had a net loss of $0.06 per share on $197.32 million in revenue.

During this quarter, paying advertising accounts increased sequentially by 14,000 to 177,000, up 27% year to year.

In terms of its segments, the company reported:

  • Advertising revenue of $214 million in the first quarter of 2018, reflected a 20% increase over first quarter 2017, driven by strong sales productivity and a 29% increase in the size of the local salesforce. The strength in advertising revenue in the first quarter also reflects a record increase in advertising customers during the quarter.
  • Transactions revenue totaled $4 million in the first quarter of 2018 compared to $18 million in the same period a year earlier. The decrease in transactions revenue reflects the absence of revenue from Eat24, which we sold in October 2017 and which generated $17 million in revenue in the first quarter of 2017.

Looking ahead to the second quarter, the company expects to see net revenues in the range of $230 million to $233 million, with adjusted EBITDA in the range of $39 million to $42 million. There are consensus estimates calling for $0.07 in EPS on $230.99 million in revenue for the coming quarter.

On the books, cash, cash equivalents and Investments totaled $830 million in on its balance sheet, with no debt at the end of the quarter.

Jeremy Stoppelman, Co-founder and CEO, commented:

We had a great start to 2018, accelerating advertising revenue growth and attracting a record number of new advertisers in the first quarter. The expansion of our non-term advertising product is showing promising results and we are raising our full-year revenue and adjusted EBITDA outlook.

Shares of Yelp closed Thursday at $47.65, with a consensus analyst price target of $47.30 and a 52-week range of $27.11 to $48.40. Following the announcement, the stock was up about 8.5% at $51.68 in the after-hours session.