Why Shares of Web.com Group Inc. Soared Today

By Markets Fool.com

Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

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What: Shares of Web.com surged on Friday after the company reported first-quarter earnings that beat analyst expectations. Up as much as 24% soon after the market opened on Friday, the stock had settled down a bit by noon, up about 16% at that time.

So what: Web.com reported revenue of $137.69 million for the quarter, down 2.5% year-over-year, but $2 million better than what analysts were expecting. While the total number of subscribers to the company's services rose slightly during the quarter, the average revenue per user declined sequentially by about 2.3%.

Web.com reported non-GAAP EPS of $0.56, down from $0.61 in the first quarter of 2014 but three cents better than what analysts were expecting. On a GAAP basis, EPS came in at $0.04, an improvement compared to $0.01 during the first quarter of 2014.

The company generated $31.9 million of operating cash flow during the quarter, allowing it to reduce its debt by $17.5 million as well as repurchase $15.8 million worth of its own shares.

Now what: While Web.com has been unprofitable on a GAAP basis for the past few years, the company's results are improving. Free cash flow has surged, and earnings are being negatively affected by the amortization of intangible assets related to the company's large acquisitions in 2010 and 2011.

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With the stock trading at about 11 times free cash flow, even after the jump today, Web.com deserves a closer look from investors.

The article Why Shares of Web.com Group Inc. Soared Today originally appeared on Fool.com.

Timothy Green has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Apple. The Motley Fool owns shares of Apple. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.