Your day's going crap? Let's rap. Snapchat self-splat chat app chaps zap $350m, Wall St saps clap

A $3.45bn loss in a single year – buy buy buy, yell investors

Snapchat maker Snap's stock price is through the roof today after the self-destructing-image flinger managed to lose only slightly less money than analysts predicted.

The photo-sharing upstart revealed this week that for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2017, ending December 31, it recorded:

  • Revenues of $285.7m were up 72 per cent from the year-ago quarter and ahead of the $253m analysts had predicted.
  • A net loss of $350m that was 106 per cent worse than the $170m blown through in Q4 2016.
  • A loss per share was $0.13 that was not as bad as the $0.16 analysts had expected
  • Daily active users were reported at 187 million, a five per cent increase sequentially and up 18 per cent year on year.

For the full year:

  • Revenues were $824m, up 104 per cent from last year.
  • Losses of $3.45bn compared to a $514m loss last year. Snap noted that the loss was inflated by the $2.6bn in stock-based expenses it had to pay out in its first year on the market.
  • Loss per share was $0.61 compared to $0.58 last year

If the prospect of losing $100m a month doesn't seem like a sound business strategy, you're obviously not a Snap investor. Expecting much lower revenues, Wall Street flipped out over the earnings and the trendy California-based biz's stock took off from Monday, climbing 46 per cent to close out Wednesday at $20.69.

The filing marks an upbeat ending to what has been a tumultuous first year for Snap Inc as a public company. The American pic-sharing app maker held its IPO in March, seeing its stock price jump in the first day from $24.47 to a high of $28.81, only to sink down to $20 a few days later. The stock would bottom out in August at $11.84.

By October, Snap admitted that one of its biggest projects, the Snap Spectacle headset, was such a flop that around $40m worth of inventory would have to be written off. Snap's stock price would hover between $14 and $16 for the rest of the year.

While the huge jump Wednesday gets Snap's price up closer to its IPO level, the upstart remains far from turning a profit in the notoriously fickle world of social networking. ®

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