Twitter more than doubles Q3 sales, but reports growth slow-down

Twitter has reported a sales boost of 114% to $361m (£224m) in its third quarter results, and a 23% year-on-year hike in the total number of active users, bringing the total to 284 million.

Dick Costolo: the chief executive officer of Twitter
Dick Costolo: the chief executive officer of Twitter

However, sales growth is slowing. In Q2 Twitter boosted revenues by 124% year on year to $312m, but also reported a loss of $145m. The firm is still not profitable, reporting a net loss of $175m (£109m) for the period, up from $64.6m last year.

The social network also recorded a slow-down in user growth during the three months ending 30 September. While user numbers were up 4.8% on its second quarter, it marked a fall in Q2’s growth rate of 6.3%.

Twitter’s commercial strategy, which has seen recent initiatives such as the introduction of objective-based campaigns that allow advertisers to only pay for ads that hit their campaign targets, appears to be paying off.

The 114% sales increase resulted in revenues of $361m, with 85% of that accounted for my mobile.

Looking ahead, Twitter is forecasting continuing growth – fourth quarter sales are likely to be between $440m and $450m, it said.

The third-quarter results fell short of analyst expectations, sending shares down 8% in after-hours trading.

Dick Costolo, Twitter’s chief executive, said: "We had another very strong financial quarter.

"I’m confident in our ability to build the largest daily audience in the world, over time, by strengthening the core, reducing barriers to consumption and building new apps and services."

According to eMarketer, Twitter is increasing its share of UK digital ad revenues – 0.69% in 2013 and forecast to his 1.34% this year.

In the UK, 11.4 million users access Twitter regularly on their mobile phones, according to eMarketer, up 17.5% on 2013.

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