LinkedIn (LNKD) reported its first quarter as a public company with a surprising profit, and nice revenue growth. However, some analysts rightly question the valuation.
- LinkedIn earned $4.5 million, or 4 cents per share, in the April-June period. That contrasted with earnings of $938,000, or 2 cents per share, at the same time last year.
- Revenue more than doubled from last year to $121 million while membership climbed 61 percent to 116 million at the end of June.
- Analysts, on average, had projected a loss of 4 cents per share on revenue of $104.5 million, according to FactSet.
- The earnings in LinkedIn's most recent quarter represented the most money the company has made in any three-period so far in its eight-year history. It's still a puny profit for a company whose market value is sitting around $10 billion.
- Losses could loom ahead too. LinkedIn has indicated it's willing to sacrifice short-term earnings to increase spending on technology and new product development. Growth is also expected to slow, partly because of economic uncertainty and partly because of the temporary lift provided by the IPO publicity.
- LinkedIn expects its third-quarter revenue to climb as high as $125 million, which would be slightly below the second-quarter growth rate of 120 percent. For the full year, LinkedIn sees its revenue rising to as high as $485 million, roughly doubling from $243 million in 2010.
- LinkedIn gets more than two-thirds of revenues from fees that it charges companies, corporate recruiting services and other people who want broader access to the profiles and other data on the company's website. The remainder comes from advertising.
Full report here.