Netflix Blows the Doors Off


Netflix Inc. (NASDAQ: NFLX) reported fiscal fourth quarter and full-year 2012 results after markets closed today. For the quarter, the video distribution company posted adjusted diluted earnings per share (EPS) of $0.13 on revenues of $945 million. In the same period a year ago, the company reported EPS of $0.13 on revenues of $905 million. Third-quarter results compare to the Thomson Reuters consensus estimates for an EPS loss of $0.13 and $934.12 million in revenues.

In the company's letter to shareholders, Netflix says U.S. streaming subscriber numbers grew to 33 million, nearly 8 million new customer where the company had expected to add 1.3 to 2 million new subscribers. Internationally, streaming subscriber numbers grew by 1.81 million to 6.12 million, and again well above projections for total subscribers at the end of the fourth quarter at 5.2 to 5.9 million.

Subscribers to the company's DVD-by-mail service declined from 8.61 million in the third quarter to 8.22 million, a loss of 38,000. The company said that DVD subscriptions have declined in every quarter since the introduction of its DVD-only plan..

For the first quarter of 2013, Netflix forecast EPS in a range from breakeven to a gain of $0.23. The consensus estimate for the first quarter has called for an EPS loss of $0.07 on revenue of $969.36 million. The company also projected total revenue for the quarter in the range of $1 billion to $1.03 billion.

For the full fiscal year, Netflix reported EPS of $0.29 on revenues of $3.61 billion compared with EPS of $4.16 in 2011 on revenues of $3.2 billion. The consensus estimate called for EPS of $0.02 on revenues of $3.6 billion.

Any way you slice it, Netflix had a big quarter.

Netflix shares are up more than 28% in after-hours trading at $132.51 in a 52-week range of $52.81 to $133.43. Thomson Reuters had a consensus analyst price target of around $73.70 before today's report.

Paul Ausick

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