Jul 26, 2019

Twitter stock rises on better-than-expected performance in new user metric

Photo: Omar Marques/SOPA Images/LightRocket/Getty Images

Twitter's stock was up nearly 4% in pre-market trading Friday, after the company said it added more "monetizable" daily users than investors had anticipated.

Yes, but: The company said it has been making investments in health and safety features on the platform, and forecasted that those investments would increase operating costs by 20% over the course of the entire fiscal year.

Why it matters: Part of Twitter's turnaround story over the past two years since going public in 2013 is that it's been able to consistently turn a profit. These kinds of investments may continue to eat at the company's margins moving forward.

  • In a statement, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey said that health remains Twitter's top priority and that the company's investments resulted in an 18% drop in reports of spammy or suspicious behavior.

By the numbers, via CNBC:

  • Earnings per share: 20 cents, adjusted, vs. an expected 19 cents per share, per a Refinitiv survey of analysts.
  • Revenue: $841 million vs. an expected $829.1 million, per Refinitiv
  • Average monetizable daily active users (mDAUs): 139 million

Between the lines: This was the first quarter in which Twitter stopped reporting a monthly active usage metric, after the company missed its analyst expectations during the two prior quarters.

  • Its new metric is called "monetizable daily active usage (mDAU)," which the company says takes into account whether a user was exposed to advertising.
  • The company said ad engagements were up 20% year-over-year, suggesting improvements to its ad products are working.

Be smart: Despite gains, Twitter's daily active user base is smaller than its peers, and it is much more international, which is typically tougher to monetize. For comparison, Snapchat said Tuesday that it now has 203 million daily active users, while Facebook has 1.59 billion.

Go deeper: How Jack Dorsey plans to change Twitter

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Lyft stock price up after strong revenue and raised outlook

Lyft listing on the Nasdaq. Photo: DON EMMERT/AFP/Getty Images

Lyft's share price is up by more than 11% after the company's Q2 earnings beat analyst revenue expectations, but also posted much wider losses than predicted (largely because of IPO-related stock compensation).

The big picture: Lyft also raised its sales outlook for the year to roughly $3.5 billion.

Go deeperArrowAug 7, 2019

News aggregation app SmartNews reaches $1 billion valuation

Screen shot from SmartNews.com

SmartNews, the Japanese news discovery app that has amassed 20 million global monthly active users, has raised $28 million in its latest funding round, bringing the company's valuation to $1.1 billion, executives tell Axios.

Why it matters: It's notable that in today's bleak news market where U.S. tech giants like Google and Facebook dominate most news referral traffic online, a Japanese-based firm has been able to gain traction. SmartNews is one of the few news-related startups to achieve "unicorn" status, or a valuation of over $1 billion, in years.

Go deeperArrowAug 5, 2019

Twitter's plans: Follow topics, edit tweets someday

Photo: ALASTAIR PIKE/AFP/Getty Images)

Twitter revealed on Tuesday in a gathering with journalists that’s it’s planning to roll out a feature that lets users follow specific topics on the service. The social network is testing a bevy of new features like conversation moderation, search for private messages, and more.

Yes, but: The company also used the event to discuss some of its work and processes in areas like user safety, “health” of the service, and security — areas in which Twitter has been heavily criticized for failing to take swift or clear action to solve problems.

Go deeperArrowAug 14, 2019