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The Active Network (NYSE: ACTV  ) is once again outpacing the pros.

The provider of Web-based registrations for triathlons, marathons, and other lively events is moving higher today after posting better-than-expected quarterly results last night.

Revenue climbed 23% to $76 million, fueled primarily by a 33% surge in technology revenue that accounts for all but 14% of Active Network's business. Registrations are naturally trending higher, but the average revenue that Active Network is collecting on each registration is also on the rise. Active Network's net loss narrowed to $0.16 a share, well short of the $0.22-a-share deficit that the pros were targeting. The company has landed ahead of analyst estimates in each of its first three quarters as a public company.

If you've registered for a 5K charitable run or a coed kickball league, there's a decent chance that you went through Active Network. It wouldn't be a surprise if you even used the company's "Couch to 5k" mobile app -- which gets couch potatoes up and moving through a gradual nine-week fitness plan -- so you didn't embarrass yourself at the 5K you got hoodwinked into attending.

There are certainly plenty of ways to play the inevitable wellness shift.

  • Nike (NYSE: NKE  ) has been outfitting active consumers with athletic footwear and branded apparel for decades. Nike hit the market on Wednesday with Nike+ FuelBand, a mobile health bracelet that monitors physical activity in high-tech ways.
  • Under Armour (NYSE: UA  ) has cashed in on its performance apparel. The clothes shake off sweat, making it a popular brand for athletes and athletic hobbyists.
  • lululemon athletic (Nasdaq: LULU  ) has carved a name for itself as a high-end boutique operator, selling yoga gear and other stylish apparel for women in motion.

There are also a few publicly traded fitness centers, but isn't it a better wager to bank on the technology leader in this space? Active Network may have gotten its start by arranging cloud-based solutions for triathlon participants -- a niche it now completely dominates -- but porting that platform across everything from doling out fishing licenses to setting up corporate events has been surprisingly seamless.

Active Network is ready to pick up the pace. After seeing revenue climb at a 20% clip through the first nine months of last year and rise 23% in its latest quarter, the acceleration should continue through 2012. At the midpoint of its projected ranges, Active Network sees its top line climbing by 25% this quarter and 27% for all of 2012. The $425 million to $435 million in revenue that the tech-savvy company is aiming for this year is well ahead of Wall Street's finish line of $409 million. Losses will continue as Active Network ramps up its offerings and absorbs strategic acquisitions, but adjusted EBITDA is projected to clock in between $46 million and $50 million (after checking in at $36 million in 2011).

Active Network is lacing up. Get ready to sprint.

On the run
Active Network has beaten the market since I singled it out to Rule Breakers newsletter subscribers five months ago. That same growth stock service recently put out a completely free report detailing the next rule-breaking multibagger. Want it? Get moving and grab it.

The Motley Fool owns shares of Under Armour and lululemon athletica. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of The Active Network, lululemon athletica, Under Armour, and Nike. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended creating a diagonal call position in Nike. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz calls them as he sees them. He does not own shares in any of the stocks in this story. Rick is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early.

Read/Post Comments (2) | Recommend This Article (1)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

  • Report this Comment On February 24, 2012, at 5:15 PM, bjenkins17 wrote:

    Weren't you guys the ones saying absolutely done buy this stock when it went public back in May of last year??

  • Report this Comment On March 01, 2012, at 1:09 AM, MoolaMonster wrote:

    I can't think of a stock with less of an economic moat. Active used to be the only game in town for race registrations. Now there are many services with better technologies, better reporting, superior pricing, and solid customer service.

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ACTV.DL $0.00 Down +0.00 +0.00%
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