Dice Has a Great Wall Street Day

Feb 1, 2011
This article is part of a series called Financial.

Dice had a great day on Wall Street today. Its stock closed at $14.95, up 14.5 percent on the day.

Depending on what expense items are considered, the job board company either met analysts expectations or came in just below. This morning Dice reported earning 8 cents a share on $37.9 million in revenue for the fourth quarter of last year. The revenue beat analysts’ estimate of $36.9, but Yahoo Finance reported the consensus was for the company to earn 10 cents a share.

However, Dice met the estimates when expenses of an acquisition and a stock offering are excluded. (One-time costs typically are not included in Wall Street’s estimates.)

Ignoring Wall Street for the moment, Dice had a great year overall. Its net income for 2010 — $18.9 million — was 17 percent higher than for 2009. For the 4th quarter, net income rose almost 50 percent, $5.7 million from $3.9 million the year before.

Dice owns and operates a number of job boards, with the largest being the tech site Revenue from that site and accounted for 65 percent of the overall revenue. Its finance boards accounted for 25 percent of the total revenue. The other 10 percent came from assorted other sites.

What appears to have really fueled the rise in the stock price was the company’s optimistic prediction that its earnings and revenue will continue to super size in 2011. Dice said it expects earnings of $30.7 million on revenues of $172 million this year. That’s well above analysts’ estimates of $166.5 million in revenue.

Dice also said it expects revenue of $39 million for the current quarter, versus Wall Street estimates of $37.8 million. In making the prediction, the company said it expected to expand its energy-sector job boards.The new group was formed after Dice acquired Rigzone and WorldwideWorker last year.

Meanwhile, CareerBuilder announced it had North American revenue of $142 million for the 4th quarter. That’s an increase of 7.7 percent over the same quarter the year before. For all of 2010, CareerBuilder grew its North American revenue by 2.6 percent to $556 million.

The privately held company — owned by Gannett, which is the majority shareholder, Tribune, McClatchy, and Microsoft — shares only its North American revenue. While profitable, it doesn’t report earnings or revenue from its global operations.

In sharing the numbers, CEO Matt Ferguson attributed the growth in part to the improvement in the U.S. economy.

“In 2010,” he said, “employers grew more confident in the economy and more optimistic about hiring plans.  You can see that reflected in CareerBuilder’s revenue. We saw steady, gradual increases in hiring across categories and this has carried over into 2011. ”

He also said CareerBuilder was in a “unique position” because of its diverse portfolio of products and services. He pointed that last year the company launched a talent network, as well as the  Facebook employee referral application Work@ and a new Compensation Portal.

Coming soon, Ferguson said, is something CareerBuilder is calling “Supply and Demand Portal.” Ferguson said the portal will enable employers “to spend recruitment dollars more strategically by using talent intelligence to locate targeted talent. Through the portal, employers can access top markets with the greatest supply of candidates, top markets where the demand for talent exceeds supply, top employers hiring for the talent they need, demographics and location intelligence and more.”

This article is part of a series called Financial.
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