Shares fell after the online dating platform reported increased revenue on Tuesday during the pandemic, but still managed to disappoint investors.
Many investors would be thrilled to see their business grow 24% in the last quarter. Match shareholders had their hearts set on sensational numbers, so when the online dating platform reported a hair short of the 25% rise in December quarter revenue forecast by the Wall Street consensus, investors sold its shares. shares.
Match shares (ticker: MTCH) are down 5% in after-hours trading at $106.20 as the company reported its fiscal fourth quarter results. The company will host a conference call Wednesday at 8:30 a.m. EST.
While the company maintains a stable of established brands like Match and OkCupid, its biggest business is Tinder, where revenue grew 23% in the quarter to more than $450 million. Among the company’s new brands, Hinge stood out, as it doubled its revenue during the year.
These results were achieved despite Covid-19 concerns in Asian markets like Japan, Match said, and some impact from the Omicron variant of the SARS-CoV-2 virus in December. Revenue for the quarter fell 2% from the $820 million forecast by analyst consensus FactSet.
Profits for the December quarter were roughly in line with expectations, with operating profit of $290 million (adjusted to exclude non-cash charges). Match’s net income for the quarter was a loss of $169 million, or 60 cents, but only because the company settled a lawsuit filed by former Tinder employees at a cost of $441 million. Excluding litigation costs, earnings would have exceeded those of the prior year quarter.
For the full year 2021, Match had revenue of $3 billion, compared to $2.4 billion in 2020. Adjusted operating profit was $1.07 billion, compared to $900 million , with net income of $283 million in 2021, or 93 cents per share, again by legal charge, and some discontinued operations. Operating cash flow for the year was $912 million.
Looking ahead, the company’s letter guided 18% to 20% revenue growth in the March 2022 quarter, with a rebound in the spring and summer as Covid concerns ease. Match is hoping for growth in non-English speaking regions and is investing in video features and metaverse opportunities. “Will we finally have a ‘summer of love’ in 2022?” wondered the company.
These growth forecasts roughly match the expectations of bullish fans like
‘s Cory Carpenter, which forecasts revenue growth of 18% in 2022 to $3.5 billion, with adjusted operating income of $1.3 billion and earnings per share of $2.52. Like most on Wall Street, Carpenter is pricing the stock as a buy, with his price target of $170.
Write to Bill Alpert at [email protected],