If potential bidders thought they'd be getting a price break on Ancestry.com
Ancestry.com posted blowout quarterly results tonight, and it couldn't have come at a better time. The New York Times' DealBook blog reported earlier this week that a few private equity-firms were in discussions to acquire the subscription-based website operator. The report indicated that the final bids won't be due until early August, but that the company's performance on Wednesday night would determine whether the site accepts an offer in the mid- or high $30s.
If the chatter is legit, don't be surprised if the buyout price approaches $40. Ancestry.com came out ahead on nearly every metric. Revenue for the quarter climbed 18% to $119.1 million, comfortably ahead of the 16% uptick Wall Street was targeting. Given the scalable nature of this model, net income climbed 20% to $20 million, or $0.44 a share. Analysts were eyeing a profit of $0.41 a share.
Ancestry.com closed out the quarter with more than 2 million subscribers, a 20% spurt over the past year and a 7% increase over this year's first quarter. Perhaps the most encouraging metric was that monthly churn clocked in at 3.4%. Losing 3.4% of your subscribers a month may seem high, but this is a sharp improvement over the 4.6% monthly churn during last year's second quarter.
Ancestry.com sees essentially flat net subscriber growth during the second half of the year, but the revenue range of $473 million to $480 million for all of 2012 is nicely higher than Wall Street's estimate of $466.2 million.
The premium website operator has gotten smarter about using free tools to grow its business. Making some of its records searchable through Google
Ancestry.com also recently rolled out a beta version of its Facebook
The encouraging developments don't mean Ancestry.com should call off the reported sale of the company. We won't know until early next year the ramifications of Comcast's
It has a chance to go out on top, and no one would blame Ancestry.com if it didn't make a public appearance at next year's family reunion.
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