LinkedIn’s 2014 forecast falls short

Oliver Smith
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LINKEDIN, the social network which targets professionals and employers, saw its shares hit last night after its 2014 forecasts disappointed investors.

Shares fell as much as four per cent in after-hours trading after LinkedIn said it expects revenue of up to $505m (£299m) this quarter with annual sales of up to $2.08bn, below analysts’ expected target of $2.11bn.

“We are excited for the remainder of 2014, and believe investment in our strategic initiatives will continue to drive our member and monetization platforms,” said LinkedIn’s finance chief Steve Sordello.

LinkedIn’s tepid outlook overshadowed a higher-than-expected 46 per cent increase in first quarter revenue to $473.2m, versus the $466.6m expected by analysts. Its earnings also beat expectations at $0.38 per share, above the $0.34 that was expected.

LinkedIn’s membership rose 8.3 per cent to 300m worldwide from 277m at the end of the fourth quarter. That pace accelerated slightly from seven per cent reported in the fourth quarter a year ago.

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