Business Data

Morning Report: Three Key Numbers From Twitter’s Q1 2017 Earnings

Morning Report: Twitter’s surprisingly good earnings report could set the stage for Snap’s first public earnings report. It could also improve sentiment among investors regarding still-private social startups.

If you need a longer drive through Twitter’s earnings, I can’t recommend a better tour than Matthew Lynley’s piece on TechCrunch.

That said, I promised you the short version. To wit, here are the three most important numbers from Twitter this morning:

  1. 9,000,000. During the quarter, Twitter grew its monthly active users by 9 million compared to its sequentially preceding quarter. Twitter now has 328 million monthly active users.
  2. $33,919,000. That’s the amount of money less that Twitter spent in the first quarter of 2017 on share-based compensation compared to the year-ago first quarter. The total line item still cost Twitter over $100 million in the most recent quarter.
  3. $3.9 billion. That figure is Twitter’s current cash hoard. The company also reported rising operating and free cash flow on a year-over-year basis in the quarter.

Why those three numbers and not, say, revenue or earnings per share?

In short, those three figures show hope, discipline, and oxygen: the first keeps hope alive for material active user growth at Twitter; the second shows that the company has the discipline needed to rein in a part of its cost structure that had become a running joke; finally, the company’s cash position underscores how secure Twitter is today, operationally. (With rising free cash flow, its cash pile will expand in just one direction.)

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Twitter shares are up 10 percent in midday trading. Whether that’s a fair response is up to you.

From the Crunchbase Daily:

EverFi raises $190M for ed-tech

  • EverFi, a provider of digital learning tools for schools, has raised $190 million in a new round led by The Rise Fund, and joined by TGP Growth, MainStreet Advisors, Jeff Bezos, and others, Fortune reports. The investment in Washington DC-based EverFi marks one of the largest financings to date for the ed-tech sector.

Unicorns eat a fifth of startup funding

  • Unicorns are known for consuming vast quantities of capital. But just how much of total startup funding do they get? A Crunchbase News analysis found that just over 20 percent of all pre-IPO, non-private equity venture capital and debt financing for U.S. startups has gone to unicorns (defined as companies valued founded after 2004 that reach private valuations of $1 billion or more).

Robinhood raises $110M for free stock trading

  • Zero-fee stock trading app Robinhood has raised a $110 million Series C round led by DST Global, with participation from new and existing investors, TechCrunch reports. The new financing reportedly values the fast-growing, four-year-old startup at $1.3 billion.

Korea’s TMON raises $115M

  • Korea’s Ticket Monster, a mobile e-commerce marketplace also known as TMON, has raised $115 million in a new round backed by Simone Investment Managers and existing investors. The round comes at a lower valuation than TMON’s last fundraise a year ago, which valued the company around $1.5 billion. TMON plans to use the funding primarily to expand into grocery sales.
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