LinkedIn’s Losses Widen

LinkedIn’s losses are mounting due its aggressive growth spurt, occurring both internally and through acquisitions.
Katie Kuehner-HebertAugust 3, 2015

LinkedIn late Thursday posted strong second-quarter revenue, but investors were not pleased with the professional networking site operator’s widening losses and weaker annual forecast.

Revenues at the Mountain View, Calif. company rose 33% from a year earlier, to $711.7 million, with revenue from its business to recruiters rising 38%, to $443 million; revenue from advertising rising 32%, $140 million; and revenue from premium subscriptions rising 22%, to $128 million.

However, LinkedIn’s losses have widened due its aggressive growth spurt, both internally and by buying companies, including its May $1.5 billion acquisition of, a leader in the training video market. Net loss attributable to common stockholders was $67.7 million, or 53 cents per share, from a net loss of $1 million, or 1 cent per share, a year earlier. Total costs rose about 53%, to $792 million.

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Excluding items, LinkedIn earned 55 cents per share. Analysts had expected earnings of 30 cents per share on revenue of $679.8 million, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

The second quarter “was a solid quarter for LinkedIn as we delivered greater member and customer value,” chief executive Jeff Weiner said in the press release. “We continue to execute against an ambitious R&D roadmap that has led to accelerated product innovation with new product rollouts throughout the remainder of this year. … Additionally, we have seen some early success integrating”

However, investors reacted to the company raising its overall revenue forecast for 2015 by only about $40 million, to $2.94 billion, causing its shares to fall 3.9% in after-hours trading.

“There are some near-term challenges that they need to overcome, which is the weakness in display advertising,” Monness, Crespi, Hardt & Co. analyst James Cakmark told Reuters.

LinkedIn has also been investing to improve its mobile presence and is developing new products for China, where it now has about 10 million members, up from 4 million last February, according to Reuters.