Alibaba beats as its user base sees big growth

Daniel Zhang AlibabaAlibaba CEO Daniel Zhang at the World Economic Forum in Davos, 2019.Business Insider/WEF

  • Alibaba's fourth-quarter results beat on both the top and bottom lines.
  • Full-year revenue guidance fell a bit short of expectations.
  • Shares were up about 1% ahead of Wednesday's opening bell.
  • Watch Alibaba trade live.

Alibaba on Wednesday morning posted fourth-qarter results that topped Wall Street estimates, but gave disappointing full-year revenue guidance. Shares were up about 1% ahead of the opening bell.

The Chinese e-commerce giant said revenue spiked 51% versus a year ago to 93.5 billion Chinese yuan ($13.6 billion) as adjusted earnings per share surged to 8.57 yuan ($1.47). Analysts surveyed by Bloomberg were expecting revenue of 91.7 billion yuan on adjusted earnings of 6.5 yuan.

Alibaba said the number of annual active consumers jumped 18% from a year ago to 654 million as mobile monthly active users climbed by 22 million to 721 million.

"More and more, Alibaba is becoming synonymous with everyday consumption in China, growing our base to 654 million annual active consumers and extending our penetration in less-developed cities," said Alibaba CEO Daniel Zhang in the earnings release.

"Our cloud and data technology and tremendous traction in New Retail have enabled us to continuously transform the way businesses operate in China and other emerging markets, which will contribute to our long-term growth."

The strong results come as the company was able to pentrate into less developed cities, improve its click-through and conversion rates, and expand its total addressable market.

Alibaba also said personal reccommendations through its Taobao consumer community helped drive "strong growth in user engagement, purchase conversion and annual active consumers."

Looking ahead, Alibaba sees revenue of 500 billion yuan for the current fiscal year. Analysts surveyed by Bloomberg were expecting full-year revenue of 509 billion yuan.

Alibaba shares were up 28% this year through Tuesday.

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