Why HomeAway, Inc. Stock Plunged Today

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.

What's happening:Shares of HomeAway were down 13.7% as of 12:30 p.m. Friday after theonline vacation rental specialist on Thursday announced weaker-than-expected first-quarter results and executive leadership changes.

Why it's happening:Quarterly revenue rose 12.6% year over year (20.6% on a currency-neutral basis) to $119 million, which translated to a 19.7% decline in adjusted net income to $10.6 million, or $0.11 per diluted share. Analysts, on average, were expecting adjusted net income of $0.13 per share on slightly higher sales of $119.7 million.

In a separate press release, HomeAway also announced President and Chief Operating Officer Brent Bellm is resigning "to pursue other opportunities," effective in June. HomeAway CEO Brian Sharples will assume Bellm's role of president, while Tom Hale, chief product officer, will take on Bellm's duties as COO. In addition, HomeAway co-founder and chief strategy and development officer Carl Shepherd has announced his intention to retire in the second half of the year. Consequently Jon Gray, HomeAway's current senior VP of the Americas, will become chief revenue officer, while VP of Global E-commerce Jeff Hurst will become chief strategy officer, and VP of Global Customer Experience Jeff Mosler will become chief service officer.

For the current quarter HomeAway expects revenue of $122 million to $124 million, or year-over-year growth of 7% to 9% (18% to 20% on a currency-neutral basis), with adjusted EBITDA of $22.5 million to $23.5 million. Wall Street was looking for earnings of $0.17 per share on sales of $129.9 million.

Finally for the full year 2015, HomeAway anticipates revenue of $493 million to $500 million, or growth of 10% to 12% (19% to 21% excluding currencies) over last year. 2015 adjusted EBITDA should be $119 million to $123 million. Analysts were modeling 2015 earnings of $0.68 per share on revenue of $514.4 million.

It's evident the market dislikes both the uncertainty of executive turnover and HomeAway's struggles with currency headwinds -- though it's hardly the only global company to suffer as such. However, currency headwinds won't last forever. And significant though they might seem, the executive changes at first glance don't appear to be a symptom of an underlying problem with HomeAway's business. In the end, that's why I think patient investors could do quite well taking advantage of this drop to capitalize on HomeAway's promise for long-term growth.

The article Why HomeAway, Inc. Stock Plunged Today originally appeared on Fool.com.

Steve Symington has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends HomeAway. 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.

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