In the face of a weak Chinese economy and various regulatory concerns, Alibaba posted strong second quarter earnings that should ease investors’ fears for while.
The company said revenue for the second quarter was $4.8 billion, up 59 percent from the same period a year ago and beating the $4.54 consensus estimate from analysts.
Alibaba’s core marketplace business saw revenues increase 49 percent to $3.5 billion. The company said this was the fastest rate of growth since its big IPO a couple of years ago. But more importantly, Alibaba points to its strong performance in mobile as a sign that the company is on solid footing for the future.
“We passed an important milestone this quarter in achieving higher monetization of mobile users than non-mobile users for the first time, reflecting the success of our strategy to stay ahead of the curve by embracing mobile,” said Maggie Wu, chief financial officer of Alibaba, in a statement. “As we demonstrate from our segmental disclosure, our results reflect the unrivaled strength of our core commerce business, as well as the accelerating traction we are seeing from our cloud computing and digital media and entertainment businesses.”
For the first time, Alibaba broke out its revenues by segments to highlight efforts to diversify behind its core marketplace business.
The company noted that its cloud business was up 156 percent year over year, to $187 million. Of course, that’s still dwarfed by a giant like Amazon, which posted $2.6 billion in cloud revenue in the most recent quarter.
Meanwhile, Alibaba’s digital media segment grew by 256 percent in the quarter, to $472 million. Unlike marketplaces, cloud and media businesses remain deeply unprofitable.