Snap Revenue Surges 72% on User Growth, Advertising Gains

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Snap's good news extended to usage metrics, with Snapchat adding 8.9 million daily active users in Q4 - the highest net addition since Q3 of 2016.

Overall revenue rose 72 percent to $285.7 million, beating analyst expectations of $253.2 million.

Snap Inc. has suffered a year's worth of disappointment from Wall Street, whose investors believe the Venice-based company isn't growing its number of users - and associated advertising revenue - fast enough. Still, Snap Inc shares closed up about 1.52 percent to $14.06 earlier today.

The company has also suffered from unfavorable comparisons to Facebook Inc.'s Instagram, which is rapidly expanding and aggressively copying Snapchat's most-popular features.

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Snap lost $350 million compared to $440 million last quarter as operating expenses grew to $261 million.

Snapchat has finally made investor concerns disappear. At one point in trading, Snap's stock cracked the IPO price of $17 a share.

Chief executive Evan Spiegel said Snap had executed its 2017 plan to improve quality, performance and automation well.

When Snap first went public in March, 2017, shares sold for $24.48 a share, but they've declined steadily since.

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Snapchat has sought to distinguish itself from Facebook with a design that "separates social from media", according to Spiegel, who said this helps avoid "many of the problems that arise when friends are commingled with professional content creators".

Snap's upbeat earnings release was in stark contract to previous quarters, which saw the company struggling with slowing user growth and lower-than-expected revenue numbers. Squali anticipates that the company will post earnings per share of $0.16 for the year.

Snap is now locked in a fight for its life with Facebook, which copied its marquee Stories feature - and the accompanying selfie filters and masks - and inserted them into all of its major products: Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp and Messenger.

The silver lining in a hard 12-month period for Snap is that it continues to grow both users and revenue despite Facebook's ruthless attempts to demolish it. Facebook's copies have certainly hurt the company, but they have not killed it yet.

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