The logo for LinkedIn Corporation, a social networking networking website for people in professional occupations, is shown in Mountain View, California February 6, 2013.  LinkedIn Corp on February 7, 2013, reported quarterly profit that beat Wall Street expectations and offered a bullish forecast for the new year, boosting shares in after hours trading. Picture taken February 6. REUTERS/Robert Galbraith  (UNITED STATES - Tags: SCIENCE TECHNOLOGY BUSINESS) - RTR3DH77

The logo for LinkedIn Corporation, a social networking networking website for people in professional occupations, is shown in Mountain View, California February 6, 2013. LinkedIn Corp on February 7, 2013, reported quarterly profit that beat Wall ... Street expectations and offered a bullish forecast for the new year, boosting shares in after hours trading. Picture taken February 6. REUTERS/Robert Galbraith (UNITED STATES - Tags: SCIENCE TECHNOLOGY BUSINESS) - RTR3DH77 (Reuters)

LinkedIn's Soft Guidance Triggers 12% Slide; Earnings Narrowly Top Views

By Earnings FOXBusiness

LinkedIn (LNKD) logged fourth-quarter earnings and revenue on Thursday that narrowly topped forecasts, but the professional network unveiled below-consensus guidance that sent the shares diving 12%.

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The negative reaction comes just a day after Twitter’s (TWTR) fourth-quarter earnings beat was overshadowed by disappointing user growth that sparked a 24% selloff.

LinkedIn said it earned $3.8 million, or 3 cents a share, last quarter, compared with a profit of $11.5 million, or 10 cents a share, a year earlier.

Excluding one-time items such as stock-based compensation, it earned 39 cents a share, topping consensus calls from analysts by a penny.

Revenue soared 47% to $447.2 million, topping the Street’s view $437.88 million.

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LinkedIn said it ended the quarter with about 277 million users, compared with expectations for about 273.5 million.

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However, LinkedIn projected first-quarter revenue of $455 million to $460 million, which is below the Street’s view of $471.3 million.

Management sees full-year sales of $2.02 billion to $2.05 billion, compared with consensus calls for $2.16 billion. LinkedIn forecasted adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of around $490 million, which is under expectations for $576.6 million.

“Solid fourth quarter performance capped another successful year where improvements in scale and relevance across our platform led to strong member engagement,” LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner said in a statement.

Shares of Mountain View, Calif.-based LinkedIn dropped 12.06% to $197.33 in extended trading, wiping out a 4.24% gain during regular trading.

During the fourth quarter, LinkedIn's U.S. revenue totaled $271.1 million, making up 61% of total sales during the fourth quarter.

LinkedIn increased talent solutions revenue 53% year-over-year to $245.5 million. This revenue stream made up 55% of total sales, up from 53% the year before.

Marketing solutions, or advertising, sales rose 36% to $113.5 million during the fourth quarter. Premium subscription revenue soared 48% to $88.1 million.

LinkedIn also announced a deal to acquire Bright, which leverages data insights and matching technology to connect job seekers and employers, for about $120 million. The transaction consists of about 73% stock and 27% in cash. LinkedIn said it plans a private placement for the stock being issued in the deal.

“Moving forward, we are investing significantly in a focused number of long-term initiatives that will allow us to realize our vision to create economic opportunity for every member of the global workforce,” Weiner said.

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