Facebook Posts Earnings Beat as Mobile Soars Past One Billion Monthly Users
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Mobile first, indeed.
In its first-quarter earnings on Wednesday, Facebook announced it now hosts more than one billion users visiting its site on mobile devices every month, reaching yet another mobile milestone for the social network.
And in another high point, Facebook posted a profit of 34 cents per share on earnings of $2.5 billion, marking a consecutive quarterly beat of Wall Street expectations. Analysts’ estimates were earnings of 24 cents per share on revenue of $2.36 billion.
It’s also a big leap over Facebook’s year-ago quarter; revenue is up 72 percent from the first quarter of 2013.
The results demonstrate that Facebook’s mobile ad business is still growing strong. The company makes 59 percent of its advertising revenue from mobile devices, up from 53 percent the previous quarter and way up from 30 percent in the year-ago quarter.
“The fact that we have a mobile ad product that we’ve added into the News Feed, and we continue to see strong mobile ad performance — our ads work, and they’re working for marketers,” Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg said in an interview.
In a low note, Facebook’s highest growth areas — namely South America, Africa and many countries outside of North America — are where the company is making the least amount of money. Not surprising, but still not good for Facebook.
Facebook also announced the upcoming departure of David Ebersman, the company’s chief financial officer. Ebersman had been with Facebook since 2009, and previously served as the CFO of Genentech, where he worked for 15 years.
Former Zynga CFO David Wehner will take over for Ebersman when he leaves the company in September, which is when Facebook expects its $2 billion Oculus VR acquisition to close.
Shares of Facebook were up two percent at $62.50 in after-hours trading on Wednesday.