LinkedIn Corporation's CEO Discusses Q1 2012 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

LinkedIn Corporation (LNKD)

Q1 2012 Earnings Call

May 03, 2012 05:00 pm ET

Executives

Matt Sonefeldt - Senior Manager, IR

Jeff Weiner - Chairman, CEO & President

Steve Sordello - SVP & CFO

Analysts

Herman Leung - Susquehanna

Heath Terry - Goldman Sachs

Kerry Rice - Needham & Company

Justin Post - Merrill Lynch

Tim Mchugh - William Blair

William Bird - Lazard

Rohit Kulkarni - Citigroup

Mark May - Barclays

Craig Huber - Huber Research Partners

Presentation

Operator

Good day, ladies and gentlemen, and welcome to the LinkedIn first quarter 2012 earnings conference call. At this time, all participants are in a listen-only mode. Later, we will conduct a question-and-answer session and instructions will be given at that time. (Operator Instructions). As a reminder, this conference call maybe recorded.

I would now like to hand the conference over to Mr. Matt Sonefeldt, Senior Manager for Investor Relations. Sir, you may begin.

Matt Sonefeldt

Good afternoon. Welcome to LinkedIn's first quarter of 2012 earnings call. Joining me today to discuss our results are CEO, Jeff Weiner and CFO, Steve Sordello. Before we begin, I would like to take this opportunity to remind you that during the course of this conference call, management will make forward-looking statements which are subject to various risks and uncertainties.

These include statements related to the expected number of growth and engagement, the expected number of searches by our members, our product offerings, the macroeconomic climate, potential impact of acquisitions on our business, the results of our research and development efforts, including the acceleration of our product deployment process, which is revenue, including revenue growth rate, adjusted EBITDA, depreciation and amortization, and stock-based compensation, share dilution, taxes, as well as sales channel mix and hiring plans, R&D expense and expectations for certain markets in the first quarter.

Actual results may differ materially from the results predicted and the reported results should not be considered as an indication of future performance. A discussion of risks and uncertainties related to our business is contained in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, in particular, the section titled 'Risk Factors' in our quarterly and annual reports, and we refer you to these filings.

Also, I would like to remind you that during the course of this conference call we may discuss some non-GAAP measures in talking about the company's performance. Reconciliations to the mostly directly comparable GAAP financial measures are provided in the tables in the press release. This conference call is also being broadcast on the internet and is available through the Investor Relations section of the LinkedIn website. With that, I'll turn the call over to Jeff.

Jeff Weiner

Thank you Matt and welcome to today's conference call. I'll start by summarizing the operating results for the first quarter and I will recap some of the highlights and key milestones since our last call. I will then turn it over to Steve for a more detailed look at the numbers and outlook. The first quarter of 2012 was a solid one building on the company's momentum in 2011. We saw strength across all of our key metrics from member signups to platform engagement, introduce several new and updated products for our members and customers and build significant growth across all three of our revenue streams. For Q1 overall revenues grew 101% to a record $188 million marking the seven straight quarter in which our revenues have at least doubled over the prior year.

We delivered adjusted EBITDA of $38 million translating to non-GAAP EPS of $0.15. Cumulative membership grew 58% year-over-year to $161 million members at the end of the first quarter as we continue to add approximately 2 member signups per second. Of the more than 15 million new members added during Q1 two thirds came from outside the United States underscoring LinkedIn's global reach.

Today 61% of LinkedIn members are now from international markets with some of our fastest growth coming from Latin America, Asia-Pacific and Southern Europe. With regard to engagement in Q1 comScore showed unique visitors growth of 37% to an average of 102.5 million reaching 107 million in March. We now rank as the 31st most visited web property globally and 28th in the United States. Additionally comScore measured page view grew 33% to over 9.4 billion.

Our internal engagement metrics which include mobile also maintained momentum with unique visiting members up approximately 50%. And internal member page views increased approximately 60% in excess of our overall membership growth, a sign of healthy member engagement. As a result of new improvements in our underlying technology architecture, 2012 will be a year of accelerated product innovation at LinkedIn built around themes of simplify, grow and everyday. Simplify is all about making it easier for our members to get more value out of core products and services we already offer. We said in February that we would refresh many of our pillar products this year. In March, we introduced a new version of People You May Know.

PYMK as we call it internally, helps professionals grow their networks by delivering personalized and relevant suggestions of other people to connect with. The new PYMK offers a much more visual and streamlined user experience and even though it just ramped up to 100% of members in mid-April we are already seeing network engagement hitting all-time highest as well as record levels of member to member invitation sent.

This increase in invitations leads to growing connection density which improves the overall member experience by increasing the amount of content available to our members. Since our last call we also simplified and improved our search experience specifically people search and groups search. While it is still early we have seen an uptick in both number of searches and actions taken from those search results. LinkedIn is now on a runway of 5.3 billion professionally oriented searches in 2012 further cementing our position as a definitive professional search engine.

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