What happened

Shares of mobile information technology platform company MobileIron (NASDAQ:MOBL) jumped as much as 26.3% on Friday, following the company's fourth-quarter earnings release. The stock is up 18% at 12:40 p.m. EST.

The stock's run-up on Friday is likely because MobileIron's fourth-quarter results were better than expected for both its top and bottom lines. In addition, MobileIron's record fourth-quarter revenue and billings were both well above its guidance going into the quarter. 

A chart showing a stock price moving higher

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So what

MobileIron's non-GAAP earnings per share in its fourth quarter were about breakeven. This was achieved with fourth-quarter revenue of $48.8 million, which was up 7% year over year. On average, analysts were expecting a non-GAAP loss per share of $0.03 on revenue of $46.5 million.

Management had guided for fourth-quarter revenue to be between $46 and $48 million, representing 1% to 5% revenue growth.

Also notable was MobileIron's meaningful acceleration in recurring revenue, which was up 15% year over year in Q4 compared to 12% in Q3.

The quarter marked MobileIron's first non-GAAP operating profit in its history.

Now what

Recently appointed CEO Simon Biddiscombe is optimistic about MobileIron's market opportunity:

We serve a market where the threats to corporate data on mobile devices are growing. There are hundreds of millions of unprotected endpoints with corporate data, and only MobileIron has the end-to-end modern security solution to protect data from the endpoint to the cloud. We are excited to capitalize on this opportunity and accelerate revenue growth in 2018 while driving leverage in the model to increase profitability.

For 2018's first quarter, management said it expects revenue between $42 million and $45 million, or flat revenue to 6% year-over-year growth. Similarly, management forecast gross billings to remain flat or increase up to 6% year over year.

Daniel Sparks has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.