Yahoo Sees Income, Users Soar in Q4

Internet portal Yahoo Inc. reported fourth-quarter income today of US$57.6 million before unusual charges, more than a four-fold increase over the same period last year. Revenue for the period more than doubled, to $201.1 million, Yahoo said.

Separately, the Santa Clara, California-based company announced a 2-for-1 stock split, effective Feb. 14.

The company's traffic increased to an average of 465 million page views per day in December, compared to 167 million page views per day in the period a year ago, Yahoo officials said.

"Yahoo has clearly established itself as a leading mass global communications, commerce and media platform," Tim Koogle, Yahoo's chairman and chief executive officer, said in a statement.

Earnings for the quarter ended Dec. 31 1999, were 19 cents per share before unusual charges, up from 4 cents per share a year ago. Financial analysts had expected the company to profit by 15 cents per share, according to First Call Corp.

The figures exclude acquisition-related charges and other one-time costs.

Including the charges, income was $44.7 million or 15 cents per share, compared with income of $3.8 million or 1 cent per share a year ago.

For fiscal 1999, revenue was $588.6 million, compared to $245.1 million in fiscal 1998, an increase of 140 percent. Pro forma net income for the year was $142.7 million or 48 cents per share, compared to $14.7 million or 5 cents per share a year ago, the company said.

The fourth-quarter results are the company's most successful to date in terms of revenue and users, officials said.

In December, Yahoo's global audience grew to 120 million unique users, double the 60 million users it served in the same period in 1998. The number of users outside the U.S. exceeds 40 million, and its non-U.S. revenues represented 13 percent of total consolidated revenues during the fourth quarter, Yahoo said.

The company provides services locally in 12 languages.

The company's focus throughout the year was two-fold, officials said: to provide users with communications, commerce and media content, and to provide advertisers and merchants with an interactive marketing platform.

The company's financial results were announced after U.S. markets closed.

Yahoo's shares on the Nasdaq closed at $397.38, down $38.69, or almost 9 percent, from yesterday's closing price.

The results also come a day after Internet powerhouse America Online Inc. announced its intention to merge with media giant Time Warner Inc.

Other highlights from Yahoo's fourth quarter include:

-- Yahoo's combined reach among home and work users increased to a record 64.7 percent in the United States during November 1999, up from 49.6 percent in November 1998, according to analyst company Media Metrix.

-- Yahoo Japan's traffic, which is included in the above total, increased to more than 39 million page views per day on average during December 1999, compared to more than 13 million page views per day in December 1998.

-- Yahoo Europe served more than 17 million page views per day and 18 million unique users during the month of December 1999. In addition, Yahoo Europe's advertiser and merchant base grew to more than 880 clients during the fourth quarter.

-- Yahoo Shopping was one of the leading shopping destinations this holiday season, with a weekly average of more than 3 million unique users, according to Media Metrix figures for the period Nov. 22 to Dec. 26.

-- Yahoo launched shopping services in the U.K. & Ireland, France, Germany, Australia, Japan, Korea and Canada; and auctions in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Korea, Mexico, Brazil and Denmark, bringing the total number of localized Yahoo Auctions services outside the U.S. to 16 countries in 11 languages.

Yahoo, in Santa Clara, California, can be reached at http://www.yahoo.com/ or +1-408-731-3300.

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