Facebook still growing like topsy
Social notworking outfit Facebook is raking in money and surprised Wall Street with its estimates, sending its shares to an all-time high.
Facebook now has more than 1.7 billion monthly users, well ahead of any rivals.
Analysts say the company has managed to transform itself from when it first went public. It managed to leap from desktop to mobile and find advertisers to back it.
Mobile advertising revenue accounted for 84 percent of the company’s total advertising revenue, compared with 76 percent a year earlier.
Total advertising revenue surged 63 percent to $6.24 billion, beating the average analyst estimate of $5.80 billion.
The company also saw strong growth in monthly active users, now boasting 1.71 billion as of June 30, up from 1.49 billion a year earlier. Time spent on its suite of apps, including the main Facebook app, Instagram and Messenger, increased “double digit percentages,” Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg said on a conference call with analysts.
David Wehner, Facebook’s chief financial officer, pointed to Asia-Pacific, especially India, as one of the most promising areas for continued user growth. The region “has been a consistently good performer for us over the last several quarters and we will continue to invest our global sales resources to drive opportunities there,” Wehner said in an interview with Reuters.
Facebook is one of the biggest beneficiaries as advertisers move money away from television to the internet and mobile platforms.
The company is also courting advertisers to experiment with Facebook Live, its recently launched live video feature. Executives said they were working to become a “video first” platform, and identified private messaging as a growing focus.
Zuckerberg reiterated his company’s glorious 10-year plan on the call with analysts. He said that over the next three years, it will focus on continuing to grow its massive user base, especially in developed nations, and over the next 10 years it will look to build new technology to get more people online and using Facebook through internet-beaming drones.
Meanwhile, Facebook still has several untapped areas for revenue opportunities, including its WhatsApp and Messenger apps, both of which have more than 1 billion users.
Facebook also owns picture-sharing app Instagram, which recently announced it has more than 500 million users. Facebook has yet to say how much money Instagram makes, but research firm eMarketer predicts it will make $1.5 billion in revenue this year.
Net income attributable to Facebook’s stockholders rose to $2.05 billioncompared with $715 million last year. Total revenue rose 59.2 percent to $6.44 billion, ahead of analysts’ average estimate of $6.02 billion.