SAN FRANCISCO — Twitter's quarterly profit, revenue and the number of daily users on its platform are rising but its latest earnings report, released days after it agreed to be sold to billionaire Elon Musk, offered scant details about what it expects on the financial front for the rest of the year.
The social media company on Thursday reported net income of $513 million, or 61 cents a share. The numbers beat analyst expectations but were fueled by a big one-time gain from the sale of its MoPub business.
Revenue rose 16% to $1.2 billion in the three months to March compared with the same period last year.
Twitter, based in San Francisco, reported an average of 229 million daily active users in the quarter, which was about 14 million more than a revised 214.7 million daily users in the previous quarter.
Twitter canceled a conference call with executives and industry analysts that usually accompanies its results, so there will be little further insight into the company’s current financial condition.
“Given the pending acquisition of Twitter by Elon Musk, we will not be providing any forward looking guidance, and are withdrawing all previously provided goals and outlook,” the company said.
Musk’s $44 billion deal to buy Twitter was announced earlier this week and is expected to close sometime this year. But before the deal is completed, shareholders will have to weigh in, as well as regulators in the U.S. and in countries where Twitter does business. So far though, few hurdles are expected, despite objections from some of Twitter's own employees, along with users who worry about Musk's stance on free speech and what it might mean for harassment and hate speech on the platform.
Musk, who also runs the electric car company Tesla, as well as SpaceX and other ventures, says he plans to take Twitter private. If he does, the company will no longer be beholden to shareholders or publicly report its financial results, which have been mixed at best since the company went public in 2013.
On one hand, going private could give Twitter more room to experiment while focusing less on short-term profit and its stock price. On the other hand, even the world's richest man is likely to want the company to make money.
“I think there is nothing better for Twitter than Elon Musk buying it and ideally replacing the board, and also doubling down on investments into products and new revenue-generating sources,” John Meyer, a technology entrepreneur and investor, told The Associated Press earlier this week.