By Adam Fraser
Another quarter, yet another powerful set of results from the world’s biggest social network.
If you want to dive into detail, you can find the detailed financials, investor presentation and management conference call. For those without the time to digest all of this, here are 10 key soundbites from the results:
- Monthly active users have reached 1.654bn from 1.591bn last quarter (4.0% growth) and 1.441bn a year earlier (14.8% growth)
- Daily active users hit 1.090bn from 1.038bn last quarter (5.0% growth) and 936m a year earlier (16.5% growth)
- Over 90% of MAUs and DAUs accessed Facebook via a mobile appliance with 54% of MAUs exclusively using a mobile
- Instagram has 400m active users and over 200k advertisers; a typical user misses approximately 70% of updates hence why Facebook introduced an algorithmic feed
- Facebook Messenger has hit 900m MAUs and Whatsapp has just hit 1bn MAUs; across the combined platforms, 60bn messages are sent every day on these platforms, 3 times the level SMS hit at its peak
- Total revenue was $5.4bn (exceeding market expectations) versus $5.8bn in Q4 (7.9% decline) and $3.5bn a year earlier (51.9% growth) – generating a net profit of $1.5bn and free cash flow of $1.9bn in the quarter; capex was up to $1.1bn for the quarter- more than double a year ago
- Facebook has reasonably balanced global spread with 50% of revenue coming from USA and Canada
- Mobile ad revenue of $4.2bn was 82% of total ad revenue (as a proxy this was 73% a year ago and only 20% 3 years ago) – both new and existing customers are spending more than prior quarters indicating a positive experience for advertisers
- Facebook ended the quarter with approximately 13,600 employees (35% higher than last year) and a cool $20.6bn in cash
- Some interesting random stats: users spend an average of 50 mins per day on Facebook properties (excluding WhatsApp); there are more than 3m active advertisers on Facebook; 35% of small businesses in the USA don’t have a web presence; people are sharing and creating 3X more video on the social network year-over-year, and that they’re watching 40% more on Instagram in the last six months.
COO Sheryl Stanberg discussed a successful marketing use case of Toyota reaching 36m people with a targeted video ad on FB for the launch of a new Rav 4 model then re-targeted users with over 500 personalised video ads.
Wall Street liked what they saw driving the shares up by 9% on the day the results were released.
“We had a great start to the year. We’re focused on our 10 year roadmap to give everyone in the world the power to share anything they want with anyone” Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook founder and CEO, said in the company’s earnings release.
In the investor conference call, management talked optimistically across a broad range of metrics, including longer term initiatives such as 360 degree video, artificial intelligence, Oculus Rift and ChatBots.
With strong user growth in Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger, ongoing investment in long term initiatives and increasing dominance in mobile, the scorecard continues to tick almost all boxes. The Facebook juggernaut powers on.