The capital could be flowing more effectively at On Deck Capital (NYSE:ONDK). The alternative lender, which focuses on small businesses, released Q4 and fiscal 2015 results that showed improvement in certain areas, but disappointed the market with its relatively weak forward guidance.
For the quarter, total revenue increased by 34%, to nearly $68 million, but net loss deepened by nearly $1 million, to $5.1 million. For the full year, the top line zoomed ahead by 61%, to just less than $255 million, with net loss narrowing to just more than $2 million, from 2014's nearly $19 million.
On Deck Capital proffered guidance for both its current quarter, and the entirety of fiscal 2016. It believes the quarter will see its gross revenue of $66 million to $69 million, with an adjusted negative EBITDA of $3 million to $5 million. For the full year, it anticipates gross revenue of $320 million to $328 million, and adjusted positive EBITDA of $10 million to $14 million.
The latter figures were notably short of analyst estimates for the period.
Does it matter?
Investors expect torrid growth from young companies -- On Deck Capital hit the market in an IPO barely more than a year ago -- and the company isn't going to hit the mark this year. Three-hundred-and-twenty million to $328 million in 2016 revenue doesn't approach the average $340 million estimate, and the company's stock will be punished by the market for the transgression.
On Deck Capital is also suffering by comparison to sort-of-peer LendingClub (NYSE:LC), although that company focuses on personal, peer-to-peer, rather than business loans. LendingClub posted a profit in its most recently reported quarter, on revenue that almost doubled on a year-over-year basis.
Still, investors shouldn't necessarily be discouraged by On Deck Capital's results. Revenue might not be leaping at the rate some would hope (or at LendingClub levels, for that matter), but that top line is growing, and those net losses aren't catastrophic. This is still a young company, and the market should still give it a chance to see if it can grow into profitability.