A few days ago, I talked to Robert S. Keane, CEO of VistaPrint
Revenues for Q3 surged 73% to $50 million -- a performance that made this the company's 25th consecutive quarter of sequential growth. Net income came in at $6 million, or $0.14 per share, compared with $2.9 million and $0.04 per share in the same period a year ago. On the earnings news, the stock price surged 12% to top $31.
Traditionally, very small businesses -- those that employ just two to 10 people -- didn't have much of a choice when it came to print jobs: They either had to spend a lot on custom jobs or do the job themselves using standard publishing tools and generic clip art. VistaPrint has a finely tuned system that makes it possible to simultaneously reap high margins from those customers and offer them professional-quality products at low prices. The company provides sophisticated online tools, including an advanced printing center, to help create high-quality print products, such as brochures and business cards.
The process involves a significant amount of technology and innovation. In fact, on average, the company files a patent every month. But the system is also highly scalable. In the third quarter, it processed about 16,000 orders per day, up 60% from last year.
What's more, VistaPrint acquired 603,000 new customers in the quarter; its user base now stands at about 7.8 million. Obviously, this is an extremely valuable asset, and the company is finding new ways to monetize it, such as with cross-selling opportunities.
Going into the Christmas season, VistaPrint looks poised to benefit nicely. But more importantly, the company has a strong business model that should continue to grow for years to come. After all, management estimates the size of its market at $16 billion, so there is a lot of room for new business -- and maybe eventually an autobiography from Keane himself.
Fool contributor Tom Taulli does not own shares of companies mentioned in this article.