"Late Again, and a Few Pennies Short." That may as well be the working title when Jupitermedia
This follows last Thursday's embarrassing 9:53 p.m. press release, in which the company admitted that it would not be releasing its quarterly financials earlier that day, as originally promised.
You could argue that I should cut the company some slack. It's probably still heartbroken after its deal to be acquired by Getty Images
Heck, it may be a little bit of both.
A cynic would argue that the company still posted results "after market close" as promised. What's 326 minutes between friends?
Besides, it's not as if the report was horrendous. Revenue climbed 5% higher to hit $34.8 million. The company posted a profit of $0.02 per share from continuing operations. Analysts were expecting a little less on the top and a little more on the bottom, but this wasn't a disastrous showing.
It may also be a difficult one to quantify -- in terms of actual growth -- because the company has been doing quite a bit of asset swapping over the past year. It sold off its media research business early last year, but has made recent acquisitions, including photography sites in Spain and Hungary. It also acquired JustTechJobs.com back in December, a venture that will fit well with some of its other online properties like Internet.com, IT hub EarthWeb.com, and Web developer hangout DevX.com.
The real sore spot in Jupiter's report comes in its outlook for the current quarter. It expects to break even on $34.5 million to $35.5 million in revenue. Wall Street was looking for a $0.08-per-share profit on $36.4 million in revenue. Yes, the company is taking a $2 million expense hit due to the botched rendezvous with Getty, but that still doesn't explain the top-line shortfall.
That stings, but it may also be what fuels new buyout speculation if the market feels that Jupiter needs an exit strategy. Who would buy Jupiter? Yahoo!
However, perhaps the presence of a rival bidder with deep pockets may be what brings Getty back to the negotiating table. The two stock photography giants looked so good together. I'm still not giving up on an eventual combination here.
To peer at Jupitermedia through a different lens:
Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz is not in any of Jupitermedia's 7 million photographs. Well, at least he doesn't think he is. He does not own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this story. He is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. The Fool has a disclosure policy.