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Yahoo beats forecasts with 28% profit gain in quarter

The increase, a rare bit of good news for the struggling online search company, came despite essentially flat revenue.

April 18, 2012|By Andrea Chang, Los Angeles Times
  • For the three months that ended March 31, Yahoo earned $286 million, or 23 cents a share, a 28% increase from $223 million, or 17 cents, a year earlier.
For the three months that ended March 31, Yahoo earned $286 million, or 23… (Paul Sakuma, Associated…)

Troubled Yahoo Inc. had a bit of good news Tuesday, reporting first-quarter earnings that beat Wall Street's estimates despite revenue that was essentially flat.

For the three months that ended March 31, Yahoo said profit rose 28% to $286 million, or 23 cents a share, from $223 million, or 17 cents, a year earlier. Income from operations decreased 11% to $169 million.

Revenue, meanwhile, increased 1% to $1.2 billion. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters expected earnings per share of 17 cents and revenue of $1.06 billion.

The online search company also confirmed that it had reorganized into three main groups: Consumer, Technology and Regions.

Chief Executive Scott Thompson, who announced the plan last week, said the resizing and restructuring would "quickly deliver the best user and advertiser experiences at scale" by bringing resources closer.

The changes are part of Yahoo's effort to emerge from a lengthy slump.

The Sunnyvale, Calif., company has seen declining online ad revenue and stiff competition from rivals Google Inc. and Facebook Inc., and started a strategic review after the ouster of former CEO Carol Bartz. The company has considered selling itself, going private or breaking itself up.

In January, Yahoo named Thompson, former president of online payments service PayPal, as its CEO; he became the company's fourth chief executive in less than five years. Also that month, Yahoo co-founder Jerry Yang stepped down from the struggling company's board.

This month, the company decided to lay off 2,000 employees, or 14% of its workforce — the deepest cuts in its 18-year history.

Yahoo reported its earnings after the markets closed. During regular trading, shares rose 23 cents, or 1.5%, to $15.01. The company's stock climbed more than 2% in after-hours trading.

andrea.chang@latimes.com

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