- Pressemitteilung BoxID 63081
Alibaba.com Announces 2008 Interim Results
First Half 2008 Highlights:
- Total revenue increased to RMB1,415.2 million, up 47.8% year-on-year.
- Revenue from our China marketplace increased by 84.6% year-on-year to RMB481.6 million, contributing 34.0% of total revenue, and was the main revenue growth driver in the first half.
- Operating profit grew by 70.6% year-on-year to RMB651.0 million. Operating profit margin increased to 46.0% from 39.8% in the first half of 2007.
- Net income (Profit attributable to equity owners) was RMB697.2 million, an increase of 136.2% year-on-year.
- Earnings per share, basic and diluted ("EPS") was 15.24 Hong Kong cents and 15.23 Hong Kong cents, respectively, compared to 6.18 Hong Kong cents in the first half of 2007.
Key Operating Data
- As of June 30, 2008, our combined marketplaces had 32.5 million registered users, an increase of 32.5% year-on-year, of which 5.6 million were from the international marketplace and 26.9 million from the China marketplace.
- As of June 30, 2008, the total number of storefronts on our marketplaces grew to 3.8 million, an increase of 54.1% year-on-year. We had 802,286 storefronts on our international marketplace and 3.0 million storefronts on our China marketplace.
- The number of paying members of our combined marketplaces was 368,006, an increase of 44.0% year-on-year, which consisted of 29,766 Gold Supplier members and 13,912 International TrustPass members from the international marketplace, and 324,328 China TrustPass members from the China marketplace.
"In the first six months of 2008 we reported healthy growth in revenue and profitability, despite a weakening global economy," said David Wei, CEO of Alibaba.com. "The network effect of our marketplaces continued to strengthen. We posted steady increases in registered users, supplier storefronts and paying members, reinforcing our position as the world's leading B2B e-marketplace. Our fast-growing China marketplace continued to contribute an increasing proportion of our overall revenue mix during the first half, demonstrating the rising importance of domestic China traders to our business. We also made significant progress in our global expansion efforts by forming partnerships in India and Japan and opening a sales office in Taiwan. We will further accelerate our globalization plans in the future.
"With a slowing global economy, high commodity prices and policies by the Chinese government towards the export manufacturing sector, we are beginning to feel the impact on our customers' businesses as well as on our own. This 'economic winter' is making it difficult for some of our customers to conduct business and as a result we have seen a slowdown in the addition of Gold Supplier members, which may continue until next year. We believe that this is a cyclical situation and that in the long run Chinese exports will remain very competitive in the world market. We are taking a number of steps to help our SME customers weather this difficult time, including lowering the entry barriers for SMEs to do business online, helping more SMEs use e-commerce to conduct business, increasing our investment in user acquisition, and enhancing customer satisfaction.
"Despite the impact the current climate is having on Gold Supplier members in our international marketplace, our China marketplace grew very quickly in the first half of 2008. This growth is a result of efforts taken over the past few years to expand the network effect of our marketplace and maintain high customer satisfaction levels, which are bearing fruit in the face of a strong domestic economy. Going forward, we expect the robust growth of our China marketplace to continue. The recent launches of a series of new products and services including 'Winport', 'China TrustPass for Individuals' and 'Export-to-China' will further expand our China marketplace and we are encouraged by the positive response these initiatives have received so far."
First Half 2008 Results
Alibaba.com reported total revenue of RMB1,415.2 million in the first half of 2008, representing a 47.8% increase from the first half of 2007. The year-on-year growth was driven mainly by increases in the number of paying members of our combined marketplaces and in average spending per paying member of the China marketplace.
Alibaba.com had 368,006 paying members as of June 30, 2008, representing a 44.0% increase from the same period a year ago.
Revenue from our international marketplace was RMB933.5 million for the first six months of 2008, an increase of 34.0% year-on-year, accounting for 66% of total revenue. The growth was primarily due to an increase in the number of Gold Supplier members and sales of value-added services.
As of June 30, 2008, Alibaba.com's international marketplace had 29,766 Gold Supplier members, a net increase of 7,748 from 22,018 as of June 30, 2007. The number of International TrustPass members reached 13,912 as of June 30, 2008, a net increase of 2,953 from 10,959 as of June 30, 2007. While we are pleased with the growth of new International TrustPass members, the growth of Gold Supplier members was slower than expected due to macroeconomic factors. Some of our export-orientated customers in China are being cautious and delaying their initial membership subscription or renewal decisions.
To achieve a higher level of customer satisfaction and sales efficiency in the international marketplace over the long-term, we began to restructure our Gold Supplier sales force in the first quarter of 2008. The sales force is now re-arranged into two teams focusing on customer acquisition and customer retention, respectively. The sales team transition was completed in the second quarter, and we expect the benefits of the move to be realized as the overall operating environment improves.
Revenue from our China marketplace increased to RMB481.6 million in the first half of 2008, an improvement of 84.6% compared to the same period in 2007, due to increases in the number of China TrustPass members and sales of value-added services. Our China marketplace accounted for 34.0% of total revenue in the reporting period and surpassed 36.1% in the second quarter of 2008, a significant increase when compared to a 27.2% contribution to total revenue in the first half of 2007. This shows the growing importance of the China marketplace to our overall business development.
Alibaba.com's China marketplace had 324,328 China TrustPass members as of June 30, 2008, a net increase of 101,752 from 222,576 as of June 30, 2007. The strong growth in China TrustPass members is due to both external and internal factors. Externally, the increased Internet penetration in China and a continued strong domestic economy is benefiting our business. Internally, we saw improvements in customer acquisitions through our own sales force and our network of resellers. The sales of value-added services such as keyword bidding and premium placements also recorded healthy growth. In addition, the launch of 'China TrustPass for Individuals' in the second quarter added over 10,000 paying members as of June 30, 2008.
Gross profit for the first half of 2008 was RMB1,244.6 million, an increase of 49.1% year-on-year. Our gross margin improved to 87.9% in the period under review, compared to 87.2% in the same period last year.
Total operating expenses were RMB665.7 million in the period, representing a 46.6% increase from RMB454.1 million in the first half of 2007. The increase was due to the expansion of our operations to support the continued growth of our businesses.
Profit from operations (which represents profit after deducting share-based compensation expense) for the first half of 2008 was RMB651.0 million, representing a 70.6% increase from the first half of 2007. Our operating profit margin for the period was 46.0%, compared to 39.8% in the same period last year. The year-on-year improvement in operating profit margin was mainly attributable to the growth of other operating income and the benefits of economy of scale during the period. As experienced previously, we expect our operating profit margin for the second half of 2008 to be lower than in the first half because we plan to further invest in user acquisition and enhance the services to our customers.
Profit from operations before share-based compensation expense (non-GAAP) was RMB745.1 million for the period under review, up 70.9% year-on-year. Operating margin excluding share-based compensation expense (non-GAAP) increased to 52.7% in first half of 2008 from 45.5% in the same period a year ago.
Net finance income for the first half of 2008 was RMB163.6 million, a year-on-year increase of RMB145.4 million compared to RMB18.2 million for the first half of 2007, due to higher interest income and exchange gain through effective treasury management.
Profit attributable to equity owners for the first half of 2008 was RMB697.2 million, representing a 136.2% increase year-on-year.
Earnings per share, basic and diluted, was 15.24 Hong Kong cents and 15.23 Hong Kong cents, respectively, compared to 6.18 Hong Kong cents in the first half of 2007.
Other Financial Information
Deferred revenue and customer advances amounted to RMB1,987.8 million as of June 30, 2008. This compares to RMB1,919.8 million as of December 31, 2007 and RMB1,524.3 million as of June 30, 2007, representing increases of 3.5% and 30.4% respectively. The increases were mainly due to the growth of paying members and their spending on our marketplaces.
Recurring free cash flow (non-GAAP) for the first half of 2008 was RMB549.6 million, representing a 6.3% increase compared to the same period last year.
Alibaba Group is a global e-commerce leader and the largest e-commerce company in China.
Since it was founded in 1999, Alibaba Group has grown to include the following core businesses: Alibaba.com, Alibaba Group's flagship company and the world's leading B2B e-commerce company; Taobao, China's largest consumer e-commerce company; Alipay, China's leading online payment service; Yahoo! Koubei, a company providing online classified listings for local services and search; and Alisoft, an Internet-based business management software company targeting SMEs in China.
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