Cision revenue up 3.6% in Q1

The company also posted a profit in the period.

CHICAGO: Cision has reported a Q1 2019 revenue increase of 3.6% year-over-year to $185.8 million, missing analysts’ estimates by $2.6 million.

The PR software company made a profit in Q1. Its net income was $11.6 million, compared to a loss of $400,000 during the same quarter of last year. Operating income decreased 40.7% year-over-year to $7.2 million.

CEO Kevin Akeroyd said in a statement that the company realized "record organic constant currency revenue growth of 4.9% versus the prior year, with solid growth in both the core business" as well as subsidiaries Falcon and Trendkite.

Cision acquired social media company Falcon and digital PR platform Trendkite in January. For the latter, Cision paid $225 million, which is 8.8 times greater than Trendkite’s 2018 revenue of $25.4 million. On an earnings call, Akeroyd highlighted products Cision Impact and PR Attribution as drivers of growth and said momentum will pick up as the company rolls out attribution services outside the U.S.

APAC was again Cision’s strongest-performing region, with a revenue increase of 11.8% to $7.8 million. Its Americas region saw revenues up by 3.8% to $126.4 million. EMEA improved its revenues by 2.1% to $51.6 million.

Akeroyd said Cision’s 7.1% growth in the Americas, excluding the email marketing business it divested, was the strongest performance in that region in four years.

Cision increased the number of subscription customers by 5.5% to about 45,300 on a pro forma basis, while the average annualized revenue per subscription was up 0.7% to about $11,600.

Meanwhile, its transaction-based customers decreased 6.4% to about 37,700, but the company improved its average quarterly revenue per transaction customer by 4.7% to about $1,440. Cross-selling revenue increased 8.4% to $3 million.

Given its acquisitions in Falcon and Trendkite and its divestiture of its email marketing services in Q1, the company provided an updated outlook for its fiscal year, adjusting its revenue estimates from $775 million to $785 million to $773 million to $783 million.

Cision also said it expects to have net income in the range of $10 million to $20 million, an improvement over its original estimate of a loss of $1 million to a profit of $4 million. It said it is planning to increase capital expenditure, inclusive of capitalized software development, from a range of $38 million to $42 million to $40 million to $43 million.

Akeroyd also teased content integrations and feature enhancements on the earnings call. 

"We’ll reveal [them] to both [old] customers and new customers alike by the end of Q2 2019," he said on the earnings call.

Cision is exploring a sale to private equity firms, according to a Reuters report from March.

This story was updated on May 10 with additional information.

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