Updated with comments from analyst call: Facebook’s share price is up about 2% in post market trading, positioning it to hit a new high tomorrow, after it reported Q3 financials that topped analyst expectations.
The company generated $896 million in net income, up 11.2% vs the period last year, on revenues of $4.50 billion, up 40.5%. The top line was ahead of the $4.37 billion that the Street anticipated. Earnings at 57 cents a share also easily topped forecasts for 52 cents.
Per usual, CEO Mark Zuckerberg offered little insight in the earnings release: “We had a good quarter and got a lot done,” he says. “We’re focused on innovating and investing for the long term to serve our community and connect the entire world.”
He told analysts that he has high expectations for Facebook’s Oculus Rift virtual reality platform, but adds that it “is going to grow slowly like computers and mobile phones when they first arrived.”
Zuckerberg also says that Facebook is eager to handle additional video content, mostly short clips for now. “We’re nowhere near serving it the way we want to.” He believes a lot of material will come from content producers who — much like Jimmy Fallon does on on the Tonight Show — “chunk their stuff up better so it can be more easily consumed by this audience online” in 3-to-7 minute clips.
Ad sales drove Facebook’s revenue increase, rising 45% to nearly $4.3 billion. Mobile sales accounted for 78% of the total, up from 66% last year.
Facebook says it had 1.39 billion mobile monthly average users, up 23%, out of a total of 1.55 billion monthly average users, up 14%.
A 68% increase in costs and expenses limited the profit growth, and dropped the operating margin to 32% from 44%.