Twitter on Tuesday reported second-quarter results that easily topped Wall Street expectations. The social media service saw revenue surge 124% to $312 million, while posting adjusted earnings of 2 cents a share, compared to a loss of 12 cents a share in the year-earlier period.
Wall Street analysts, on average, had forecast Twitter would report a loss of one cent per share on revenue of $283 million.
The number of monthly active users also grew faster than analysts expected, increasing 24% to 271 million. Monthly users on mobile devices were up 29% to 211 million. But the overall slowdown in user growth from the 40% rate last year is likely to remain a concern for investors.
Advertising revenue grew 129% from a year ago to $277 million, with mobile ads accounting for 81% of the total. Ad revenue per thousand “timeline views” -- a measurement of how often users refresh their Twitter streams -- doubled to $1.60 from a year ago.
International revenue spiked 168% to $102 million, accounting for a third of total revenue, while data licensing and other sales added another $35 million.
During the quarter, Twitter capitalized on the World Cup with new features and functions tied to the event to help accelerate user growth and boost engagement. It generated 672 million tweets during the month-long soccer tournament.
"Our strong financial and operating results for the second quarter show the continued momentum of our business," said Twitter CEO Dick Costolo, in the company’s earnings release. "We remain focused on driving increased user growth and engagement, and by developing new product experiences, like the one we built around the World Cup, we believe we can extend Twitter's appeal to an even broader audience."
In the company’s earnings call, he suggested that Twitter’s total audience is two to three times larger than its user base when factoring in those who are exposed to Twitter content but not logged in. The company is reportedly readying new metrics to measure its reach beyond users who log in at least once a month.
The quarter also saw some high-level management shuffling at Twitter, with former Goldman Sachs and NFL executive Anthony Noto replacing Mike Gupta as CFO and the resignation of COO Ali Rowghani.
At the same time, the company continued to make acquisitions aggressively, buying companies including Namo Media and TapCommerce to bolster its strength in mobile advertising. It
also rolled out a new suite of ad tools for developers to promote app installs
both on and off Twitter.
Looking ahead, Twitter projects third-quarter revenue of $330 million to $340 million. For the full fiscal year, it forecasts sales of $1.31 billion to $1.33 billion, beating Wall Street expectations.
Twitter shares closed Tuesday at $38.59, but surged about 30% in after-hours trading to $51 a share immediately following the release of second-quarter earnings.