Pinterest delivers first earnings report as a public company

Pinterest (NYSE: PINS) shared lukewarm first-quarter financials on Thursday after the closing bell in what was its first earnings report as a public company.

The digital pinboard went public in April, rising 25 percent during its first day trading on the New York Stock Exchange. Pinterest’s public market performance has continued to stay in the green, closing up about 8 percent Thursday at nearly $31 per share for a market cap of $16.7 billion.

The company, led by co-founder and chief executive officer Ben Silbermann, posted revenues of $202 million on losses of $41.4 million for the three months ending March 31, 2019. This surpassed Wall Street’s revenue estimates of about $200 million and represented significant growth from last year’s Q1 revenues of $131 million. Losses, however, came in slightly higher than the expected adjusted loss of 11 cents per share with reported losses falling at 32 cents per share.

“The IPO was a significant milestone, but our focus at Pinterest hasn’t changed,” Silbermann said in a statement. “We want to help people discover inspiring ideas for every aspect of their lives, from fashion and home decor to travel and fitness. Our success can be seen in our Q1 results, and we’re excited to continue to grow our reach and impact in the years to come.”

Pinterest in April sold 75 million Class A shares in an IPO that raised $1.4 billion. The IPO gave the company a fully diluted market cap of $12.6 billion, a figure slightly larger than its Series H valuation of $12.3 billion. This was amid concerns the company would see a slighter smaller valuation upon its IPO and gain the unseemly title of “undercorn .”

Pinterest previously disclosed revenues of $755.9 million in the year ending December 31, 2018, up from $472.8 million in 2017. Losses, meanwhile, shrank to $62.9 million last year from $130 million in 2017. For the full year 2019, Pinterest, expected to reach profitability by 2021, predicts full-year revenues of between $1.05 billion and $1.08 billion, up from $755.9 million in 2018.

Pinterest post-IPO performance and earnings report comes in stark contrast to both Lyft and Uber’s treatment on their respective stock exchanges. Lyft, for its part, has fallen since its IPO despite an initial pop of 21 percent . In its first-ever earnings report as a public company, released last week, posted first-quarter revenues of $776 million on losses of $1.14 billion, including $894 million of stock-based compensation and related payroll tax expenses. The company’s revenues surpassed Wall Street estimates of $740 million while losses came in much higher as a result of IPO-related expenses.

Uber suffered through a catastrophic IPO last week only to continue falling in the days since. The ride-hailing giant was previously valued at $72 billion by venture capitalists on the private market. It priced its stock at $45 a share for an $82.4 billion valuation last week. The company closed Thursday trading at about $43 per share for a market cap of $72.5 billion.

Pinterest’s disruptive digital advertising business appears to be more attractive to Wall Street than ride-hailing however. In addition to delivering an attractive earnings report, Pinterest displayed user growth. The company now counts 291 million monthly active users, a 22 percent increase from Q1 2018. Pinterest continues to gain global users, growing an impressive 29 percent in the last year. The U.S., however, remains the company’s core market where average revenue per user grew 41 percent to $2.25.

Pinterest was undeterred by skeptics, who predicted its nice-guy image and history of slower growth would make for a poor performing public company. Today, it’s market cap has surpassed Lyft, which was worth billions more before the two companies transitioned into the public markets.

How long Pinterest can stay in the green remains to be seen.