Google Beats On Earnings And Declares Stock Split, But STILL Gives No Real Answer On Google+

Larry Page serious

Photo: Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

Google just reported earnings, and it looks like a good beat on earnings, but light on revenue.Non-GAAP EPS came in at $10.08, versus $9.65 expectations.

But sales were a little light: Net revenue was $8.14 billion, right near the target of $8.15 billion.

Wall Street seemed to expect the numbers — the stock barely moved after hours.

Here’s a rundown of all the numbers:

  • Non-GAAP EPS: $10.08 vs $9.65 expected
  • GAAP EPS: $8.75
  • Gross revenue: $10.65 billion
  • Net revenue (minus traffic acquisition costs); $8.14 billion vs $8.15 expected.
  • Google Sites revenue: $7.31 billion, up 24% from last year.
  • Google Network revenue: $2.91 billion, up 20% from last year.
  • Capital expenditures: $607 million, a drop from recent quarters.
  • Cost per click: -12% from last year. That’s a larger drop than last quarter’s -8% drop, and could be cause for nervousness.
  • Paid clicks: up 39%.

The company also declared a dividend, but not cash — it’s a special new non-voting form of stock. Investors will get one new share for each current share they hold, like a 2-for-1 split.

The idea, basically, is to use Google’s equity to reward shareholders without diluting the control of the cofounders.

On the company’s earnings call, there was a lot of discussion about Android and Google’s mobile strategy. One questioner wanted to know how Android affects things like cost per click and traffic to Google sites.

CEO Larry Page chided him for “short-term thinking,” and instead tried to explain the huge technological promise of Android — it’s not every day you get a new operating system. Page also said that he thinks the ad opportunity on mobile will eventually be HIGHER (in terms of cost per click) than on the desktop, because localisation makes targeting better, and because so much spending is done at local businesses.

Page also teased the audience by noting that Google+ is really two things: a new social layer across all Google Web sites, and an actual “social destination” where people go to share stuff. Then he gave usage numbers for the social layer — 170 million.

But still didn’t give numbers for the actual plus.google.com site, saying only that he was happy with its growth and engagement.

Such a tease.

Here’s our live blog of the earnings call:

 

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