What happened

Shares of online retailer and blockchain technology company Overstock.com (NASDAQ:OSTK) shot higher on Thursday, rising 11.3% by the time the market closed.

The stock's gain came after Overstock's first-quarter earnings release, which included better-than-expected revenue and an improved outlook for the company's retail business.

A chart showing a stock price moving higher

Image source: Getty Images.

So what

Overstock reported first-quarter revenue of $368 million, down 17% year over year. On average, analysts were expecting revenue of $361 million. The company's net loss per share of $1.18, however, was worse than the loss of $0.93 analysts were expecting.

Free cash flow during the first quarter worsened year over year from negative $14.2 million in 2018 to negative $55.6 million in 2019.

Now what

Looking ahead, Overstock said it now expects its adjusted EBITDA from retail in 2019 to be $15 million, up from a previous forecast of $10 million. This will be driven primarily by aggressive cost-cutting.

In the first-quarter earnings release, management said:

Our expense management has been aggressive. We have taken a tremendous (>25%) amount of cost out of our expense structure in the last 5 months. We are lean and fit as an organization.