(Adds details from conference call, updates shares)
May 7 Real estate website operator Zillow Inc
reported a surprise quarterly profit as more people signed
up to rent, sell or mortgage properties, and forecast
higher-than-expected revenue in the current quarter.
Zillow shares rose 6 percent to $99.59 in after-market
trading on Wednesday.
The company, which gets most of its revenue from
subscriptions to its website from real estate agents, said
premier agent subscribers rose 56 percent to 52,968 for the
first quarter ended March 31.
Traffic from mobile devices more than doubled from a year
ago, accounting for about two-thirds of total visits to the
website, Zillow said.
Zillow, the most-visited real estate websites in the United
States, lists properties for sale or rent on behalf of
homeowners and real estate agents.
The Zillow-Yahoo real estate network recorded about 53
million unique visitors in March, a 13 percent rise since
January, according to comScore. The number of visitors were
almost double than nearest rival Trulia Inc's network.
Zillow started a partnership with Yahoo Inc in 2010
to boost its online presence.
The company spent $34.9 million on advertising in the
quarter, up from $19.8 million a year earlier.
The company had said in February it would spend $36
million-$37 million on advertising in the quarter.
Net loss widened to $6.3 million, or 16 cents per share,
from $3.7 million, or 11 cents per share, a year earlier.
Excluding items, the company earned 2 cents per share.
Revenue jumped 70 percent to $66.2 million.
Analysts on average expected a loss of 8 cents per share on
revenue of $63.2 million, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Zillow forecast second-quarter revenue of $75.5
million-$76.5 million in a post-earnings conference call.
Analysts were expecting a loss of 5 cents per share on
revenue of $71.8 million.
(Reporting by Sampad Patnaik in Bangalore; Editing by Joyjeet
Das and Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)