Facebook reported its fiscal first-quarter earnings today, with revenue of $3.54 billion on non-GAAP earnings per share (EPS) of $0.42. These figures just missed analyst expectations of $3.56 billion in revenue but beat expectations of $0.40 EPS.
Year over year, Facebook’s revenue is up by 41.7 percent over Q1 2014; For the same quarter a year ago, the company reported $2.50 billion in revenue and $0.34 non-GAAP EPS. Last quarter, Facebook posted revenue of $3.85 billion and $0.54 EPS. Advertising accounted for $3.32 billion of the company’s revenue, up 46 percent from the same time a year ago. The company also earned $226 million in payments and other fees.
Mobile ad sales drove Facebook’s performance. For the quarter, the company reported such sales were 73 percent of its total revenue, up from 59 percent a year earlier. In the fourth quarter, mobile ads had accounted for 69 percent of revenues.
Its continued strength in mobile ads clearly pleased Wall Street over the last quarter. The company’s stock was up about 9.1 percent over the last three months. As of this writing, the company’s stock was at $84.63, up 1.21 percent for the day.
It’s no surprise that Facebook’s financial performance on mobile was so strong. According to App Annie, which analyzes mobile app sales and revenues, Facebook held the top four nongame spots among all apps worldwide. It said in a report earlier this week that Facebook Messenger, Facebook, WhatsApp, and Instagram were the four most-downloaded nongame apps and that Messenger was the most downloaded nongame app in the United States, France, the U.K., Brazil, and Germany.
At quarter’s end, Facebook said it had 1.44 billion monthly active users, up 13 percent year over year, and 1.25 billion monthly mobile active users, up 24 percent from a year earlier. It also reported 936 million daily active users, up 17 percent from this time in 2014, and 798 million mobile daily active users. That was an increase of 31 percent from the first quarter of 2014.
During the quarter, Facebook spent 29.9 percent of its revenue — $1.06 billion — on research and development, and of that, $566 million, or 53.3 percent, was spent on share-based compensation expenses. In other words, the company spent a lot on acquisitions and hiring during the quarter. During the first quarter of 2014, it spent just $181 million on similar expenses.