Twitter Reports Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year 2014 Results, 288 Million monthly active users

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Twitter has announced financial results for the quarter and fiscal year ended December 31, 2014.

  • Q4 revenue of $479 million, up 97% year-over-year
  • Q4 net loss of $125 million and non-GAAP net income of $79 million
  • Q4 GAAP EPS of ($0.20) and non-GAAP EPS of $0.12
  • Q4 adjusted EBITDA of $141 million, representing an adjusted EBITDA margin of 30%
  • 2014 revenue of $1,403 million, up 111% year-over-year
  • 2014 net loss of $578 million and non-GAAP net income of $101 million
  • 2014 GAAP EPS of ($0.96) and non-GAAP EPS of $0.14
  • 2014 adjusted EBITDA of $301 million, representing an adjusted EBITDA margin of 21%

“We closed out the year with our business advancing at a great pace. Revenue growth accelerated again for the full year, and we had record quarterly profits on an adjusted EBITDA basis,” said Dick Costolo, CEO of Twitter. “In addition, the trend thus far in Q1 leads us to believe that the absolute number of net users added in Q1 will be similar to what we saw during the first three quarters of 2014.”

Twitter FY 2014

Fourth Quarter 2014 Operational Highlights

  • Average Monthly Active Users (MAUs) were 288 million for the fourth quarter, an increase of 20% year-over-year, which reflects a loss of approximately 4 million net Monthly Active Users in the fourth quarter due to changes in third party integrations.
  • Average Mobile MAUs represented approximately 80% of total MAUs.
  • Timeline views reached 182 billion for the fourth quarter of 2014, an increase of 23% year-over-year.
  • Advertising revenue per thousand timeline views reached $2.37 in the fourth quarter of 2014, an increase of 60% year-over-year.

Fourth Quarter 2014 Product Highlights

  • Users: Twitter launched the ability for people to share a Tweet privately through a Direct Message, making it easier for people to have private discussions around public content. Twitter also launched the Audio Card, which lets people discover and listen to audio directly in their timeline on Android and iOS devices.
  • Advertisers: Twitter began testing Twitter Offers in the United States, enabling advertisers to create credit card-linked promotions and share them directly with people on Twitter. Twitter also launched tailored audiences for mobile apps, a new way for advertisers to create targetable audience segments based on mobile app actions such as installs, purchases, or sign-ups. Finally, Twitter launched two new mobile targeting options including the ability to target by mobile carrier and the ability to target users with new mobile devices.
  • International Expansion: Twitter continued the international expansion of advertising offerings to 13 additional markets worldwide. Twitter’s self serve ad products expanded to 8 new markets in Q4 and now serve marketers in 28 countries.
  • Developers: Twitter held its first mobile developer conference, Flight, where it unveiled Fabric, a single modular Software Developer Kit consisting of app stability and analytics tools through Crashlytics, monetization offerings through MoPub, identity and sign-in services through Twitter and a first-of-its-kind offering called Digits, and content distribution and syndication through an improved Twitter SDK.
  • January Launches: In January, Twitter launched a recap feature, marked with a “While you were away” heading, that surfaces at the top of the Timeline some of the best Tweets people may have missed from accounts people follow; group Direct Messaging, which lets people expand private conversations from one other participant to as many as 20, and new video functionality that allows people to capture, edit and share videos right from within the Twitter app.

Fourth Quarter 2014 Financial Highlights

Revenue – Revenue for the fourth quarter of 2014 totaled $479 million, an increase of 97% compared to $243 million in the same period in 2013.

  • Advertising revenue totaled $432 million, an increase of 97% year-over-year.
  • Mobile advertising revenue was 88% of total advertising revenue.
  • Data licensing and other revenue totaled $47 million, an increase of 105% year-over-year.
  • International revenue totaled $164 million, an increase of 149% year-over-year.
  • International revenue was 34% of total revenue.

Net loss – GAAP net loss was $125 million for the fourth quarter of 2014 compared to a GAAP net loss of $511 million in the same period in 2013. GAAP net loss for the fourth quarter of 2014 included $177 million of stock-based compensation expense.

Adjusted EBITDA – Adjusted EBITDA was $141 million for the fourth quarter of 2014, an increase of 216% compared to $45 million in the same period in 2013.

Non-GAAP net income – Non-GAAP net income was $79 million for the fourth quarter of 2014, an increase of 712% compared to $10 million in the same period in 2013.

EPS – Basic and diluted GAAP EPS was ($0.20) for the fourth quarter of 2014 compared to ($1.41) in the same period in 2013.

Non-GAAP EPS – Non-GAAP EPS was $0.12 for the fourth quarter of 2014 compared to $0.02 in the same period in 2013.

Capital expenditures – Purchases of property and equipment for the fourth quarter of 2014 were $69 million. Additionally, $30 million of equipment was financed through capital leases during the fourth quarter of 2014.

Cash, cash equivalents and marketable securities – As of December 31, 2014, cash, cash equivalents, and marketable securities were approximately $3.6 billion, compared to $3.6 billion as of September 30, 2014.

Outlook

Twitter’s outlook for the first quarter of 2015 is as follows:

  • Revenue is projected to be in the range of $440 million to $450 million.
  • Adjusted EBITDA is projected to be in the range of $89 million to $94 million.
  • Stock-based compensation expense is projected to be in the range of $160 million to $170 million, excluding the impact of equity awards that may be granted in connection with potential future acquisitions.

Twitter’s outlook for the full year of 2015 is as follows:

  • Revenue is projected to be in the range of $2.3 billion to $2.35 billion.
  • Adjusted EBITDA is projected to be in the range of $550 million to $575 million.
  • Capital expenditures are projected to be in the range of $500 million to $650 million.
  • Stock-based compensation expense is projected to be in the range of $700 million to $750 million, excluding the impact of equity awards that may be granted in connection with potential future acquisitions.

Note that Twitter’s outlook for the first quarter and full year of 2015 reflects foreign exchange rates as of January 31, 2015.

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