Tuesday, April 30, 2013

IACI, FB, & BCOR Earnings Preview ...

IAC/InterActive (IACI) will be reporting Q1 numbers on Tuesday after the close.  The Street expects revenues of $757.3MM and EPS of $0.69.  From a revenue standpoint, we are pretty confident the Company will meet expectations.  Seasonality may have impacted search revenues negatively from Q4, but on a Y/Y basis we expect 8% - 10% growth.  Google's (GOOG) Q1 results were encouraging as its traffic acquisition cost (TAC) was up approx. 18% Y/Y.  Based on the relationship between GOOG's TAC and IACI's search revenues historically, again, we expect high single-digit to low double-digit growth in search revenues.  Given the New Year resolutions and Valentine's Day in Q1, we think Match.com related revenues will be pretty healthy.  Although we expect the Company to meet expectations on the bottom-line, we could see that 35% Y/Y EPS growth to increase a bit further in Q2 - Q4, as approx. 40% of the media segment's operating loss was likely in Q1.  Going into the quarterly earnings call, IACI has increased 13.1% since we discussed it on 1/29.  Since that time, S&P 500 has gone up 5.7%.

Regarding Facebook (FB), we must say that given many questions surrounding potential growth of their mobile ad revenues, along with what appears to be the beginning of stagnation in user growth within the developed regions such as US and the UK, we do not have a clear idea about whether or not the Company will impress the Street with its Q1 numbers.  What we will likely analyze further is not only growth of mobile ad revenues and users in emerging markets, but also growth in revenues generated from those emerging market users.  In addition, we think Q2 and Q3 results will be very important as they will indicate whether FB's 'Home' strategy will pay off going forward or whether the positive things we have heard about it are merely new product launch hype and will be short-term lived.  FB will post its Q1 numbers on Wednesday (5/1) after the close.  Shorting FB since we first discussed it on 5/21/12 would have generated a 21% return, pretty much in line with how much S&P 500 has increased since then.

Blucora (BCOR) will post its Q1 results on Thursday (5/2) after the close.  We're looking for around 22% growth in search revenues, which, as was the case with IACI, we believe is confirmed by GOOG's Q1 numbers.  Q1 is the seasonally strongest quarter for BCOR's tax services segment. Based on guidance, what is expected from INTU and HRB, and likely more individuals and families filing taxes due to slight improvement in employment last year, we think tax service revenues will meet expectations.  Given the likelihood of more e-filers, we expect margins to be slightly better than expected which may help BCOR beat the Street's $0.50 EPS estimate.  On the top-line, the consensus is $158.8MM.  Going into the quarterly earnings call, BCOR has declined 2.4% since we discussed it on 1/29. 

Lastly, we will post our NFP projection later this week.  NFP numbers and overall state of employment report will be released by BLS this Friday.

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