LinkedIn fired up as hiring drives profit

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LinkedIn. (Duncan Alfreds, Fin24)
LinkedIn. (Duncan Alfreds, Fin24)

Washington - Corporate networking site LinkedIn reported better-than-expected quarterly profit and revenue as more businesses used its services to hire staff.

The company's hiring business has been thriving as employers find its services more helpful in assessing a candidate's suitability for a role.

Strong growth in the hiring business and rapid expansion in international markets such as China are considered by analysts to be the main growth drivers for the company in the next few quarters.

Revenue at LinkedIn's hiring business, called Talent Solutions, rose 45% in the third quarter ended on 30 September, representing 61% of total revenue.

The company had launched a Chinese language "beta" version of its main website in February to expand in the world's largest internet market by users, looking to replicate its success in the US internationally.

LinkedIn, however, forecast on Thursday current-quarter results below expectations, sparking a brief selloff that sent the company's shares down as much as 11% in extended trading.

But shares soon reversed to trade up 3% at $209.12 as investors focused on the handy third-quarter beat.

LinkedIn's net loss attributable to stockholders widened to $4.3m, or 3c per share, in the quarter, from $3.4m, or 3c per share, a year earlier. Excluding items, LinkedIn earned 52c per share.

Revenue rose 45% to $568.3 million.

For the fourth quarter ending December, LinkedIn forecast adjusted earnings of about 49c per share and revenue of between $600m and $605m.

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