Wednesday, 24 April, 2019

Alphabet reports $39.3 billion Dollars revenue in Q4 2018 earnings

The Google name is displayed outside the company's office in London Britain. Toby Melville Reuters  File The Google name is displayed outside the company's office in London Britain. Toby Melville Reuters File
Lloyd Bates | 06 February, 2019, 05:30

However, Alphabet shares fell as the company reported rising costs, a narrower operating margin and a widening loss at its "other bets" unit, which houses its artificial intelligence research and life sciences divisions, among other high-risk businesses.

Advertising revenues were up 20% from last year's fourth quarter, to $32.6bn, the same rate of growth as last quarter.

"With great opportunities ahead, we continue to make focused investments in the talent and infrastructure needed to bring exceptional products and experiences to our users, advertisers and partners around the globe", Porat added. The company's operating margin, a closely watched measure of profitability, was 21 percent, down from 24 percent.

It reported $39.3 billion in revenues for the fourth quarter, up 22 percent from the previous year, beating expectations of $38.9 billion.

Not surprisingly, Google Home was the breakout hit for the company over the holiday season. Advertising directors speaking to CNBC have said some brands were moving 50 to 60 percent of their ad spending from Google to Amazon.

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Alphabet shares were down 3.3 percent to $1,103.50 in after-market trades that followed release of the earnings figures from the final three months of a year ago.

Impressions on Google network member properties remained at 7%, but the cost per impression on these properties rose to 7%, up from 5% in the year-ago quarter. And on Amazon, advertisers can see when someone viewing or clicking their ads makes a purchase, something Google can't do since almost all of the sales its drives ultimately happen on other sites. This more intense competition is seeing heightened downward pricing pressure being placed on Google, whose costs of doing business are also on the rise. Mobile search advertising revenue is Google's largest driver of growth. "We'll continue down this path". And these are very much bets - it lost $3.4 billion on Other Bets in the past year. Chief Executive Sundar Pichai (pictured) has said only that it's a billion-dollar-a-quarter business, and that was a year ago. Facebook results beat Wall Street estimates last week. By early 2018 cloud computing was reportedly already a $1 billion per quarter revenue generator for Alphabet. Operating losses were $1.33 billion.

Alphabet is the last of the so-called Faang - Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix and Google - to report its quarterly earnings.

Alphabet's cash and other short-term holdings totaled $109.14 billion at the end of 2018. Without those changes, net income for Q4 of 2017 would have been $6.8 billion. Artificial intelligence (AI) developments are also likely to drive future growth for Google and a source of at least some of its R&D expenditure.

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