Roblox shares rise 12% after company beats estimates and issues strong guidance

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The New York Stock Exchange welcomes executives and guests of Roblox in celebration of its direct listing, March 10, 2021.

Roblox reported results for the fiscal fourth quarter on Wednesday that beat consensus estimates on the top and bottom lines. Shares jumped 13% in pre-market trading.

Here’s how the company did:

  • Losses per share: 52 cents vs. 55 cents expected by analysts, according to LSEG, formerly Refinitiv.
  • Revenue (bookings): $1.13 billion vs. $1.08 billion expected, according to LSEG.

The revenue figure is what Roblox calls bookings, a category that includes sales recognized during the quarter and deferred revenue. 

The video game developer generates revenue from sales of its virtual currency called Robux, which players use to dress up their avatars and buy other premium in-game features.

Roblox also reported full-year revenue of $3.52 billion, versus an LSEG consensus estimate of $3.41 billion. The company’s full-year loss per share was $1.87, compared to a consensus estimate of $1.91.

Roblox’s quarterly bookings hit $1.1 billion — the company’s highest ever.

“We enter 2024 with even more conviction of being able to achieve our long-term goal of attracting over 1 billion daily active users with optimism and civility,” Roblox CEO David Baszucki said in a release. The company reported average daily active users, or DAUs, of 71.5 million for the quarter, up 22% compared to the year-ago period.

Roblox’s average DAUs have grown for the past two quarters, after stalled growth in the back half of fiscal year 2022 and a slight slip between the first and second fiscal quarters of 2023.

Average bookings per daily active user increased 3% to $15.75, mirroring a bump that Roblox has historically seen in its fiscal fourth quarter.

“We’re seeing strength, both international as well as older players on the platform,” CEO Baszucki told CNBC’s Steve Kovach, pointing to double-digit growth in both the 13-and-up segment and non-U.S. & Canada segment. “Those are good trends, because those are really big cohorts,” Baszucki said.

The number of engaged hours for users fell from 16 million for the third quarter of 2023 to 15.5 million during the fourth quarter. Still, it represents a 21% spike compared to the year-ago period.

The company provided guidance for 2024 and the first fiscal quarter. The company expects first-quarter bookings between $910 million and $940 million, and a net loss ranging from $342 million and $347 million. It guided to full-year 2024 bookings between $4.1 billion and $4.28 billion, higher than the consensus range of $3.4 billion to $4.27 billion, and a net loss of between $1.37 billion and $1.4 billion.

Personnel costs continue to weigh on the company, although they’ve grown at a slower rate than bookings have. Excluding share-based compensation, quarterly personnel costs grew 24% year over year from $160 million to $198 million, with the sharpest increases reflected in Roblox’s infrastructure and trust and safety teams.

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