United Online, Inc. (UNTD)

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United Online Inc. (UNTD)

Q4 2008 Earnings Call

February 19, 2009 5:00 pm ET


Mark Goldston - Chairman, President, and CEO

Neil Edwards - acting CFO (for Scott Ray - CFO)

Erik Randerson - Vice President, Investor Relations


Youssef Squali - Jefferies & Co.

Mike Crawford - Reilly and Co.

James Cakmak - Sidoti

Yun Kim - Pacific Growth Equities

Kevin Copeland (in for Jim Friedland) - Cowen & Co.

Tom Kerr - Reed Conner

Ali Mogharabi - B. Riley & Co.

Sandeep - Jefferies & Co.

Lance Ettus - Mortar Rock Capital Management

- Wedbush



Ladies and gentlemen, thank you very much for standing by and welcome to the United Online fourth quarter year end conference call. Today's conference is being recorded and at this time I would like to turn things over to Erik Randerson. Please go ahead, sir.

Erik Randerson

Thank you. Hello and welcome to the United Online's conference call to discuss our financial results for the fourth quarter and year ended December 31, 2008. With me today is Mark Goldston, our Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer; and Neil Edwards, our acting Chief Financial Officer. Also joining today is Becky Sheehan, Executive Vice President and CFO of our FTD subsidiary.

In addition, on today’s call and on the accompanying slides that are available within the Investor Relations section of our website, we will refer to adjusted operating income before depreciation and amortization or OIBIDA, segment adjusted OIBIDA, adjusted net income, adjusted net income per share, and free cash flow. Management believes that each of these measures are useful in evaluating the company's operating performance.

These measures are not determined in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in US or GAAP and should be considered in addition to, not as a substitute for or superior to, financial measures determined in accordance with GAAP. Definitions of these non-GAAP financial measures are provided in today's press release and in the accompanying slides on our website along with reconciliations to the most comparable GAAP financial measures.

Before we get started, I also need to point out that the company does apply the safe harbor provisions as outlined in the press release to any forward-looking statements that may be made on this call. Statements regarding our current expectations about our future operations, financial conditions, performance, pay accounts, services, and the industry in which we operate are forward-looking statements that are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking statements.

More information about potential risk factors that could affect the company's business and its financial results is included in today's press release under the caption Cautionary Information Regarding Forward-Looking Statements and in United Online's most recent filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Projections provided by management in the press release and in today's call are based on information available to us at this time and management expects that internal projections and expectations may change over time; however, the company does not intend to revise or update this information and may not provide this type of information in the future.

Any persons replaying this broadcast after February 19 of 2009 should recognize that any non-historical information discussed in today's call might not be current or valid after this date, because the circumstances and assumptions underlying such information may have changed.

And with that, we're going to start out with a few comments from Mark and Neil, and then we're going to open it up for questions. So I'll now give the floor to our Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, Mark Goldston.

Mark Goldston

Thanks, Erik, and welcome everyone to the United Online’s earnings call for the fourth 2008 quarter and the full year ended December 31, 2008.

I’ll begin with a high level view of our operating highlights for the fourth quarter and then review the performance of our individual operating segments. Neil Edwards, our Chief Accounting Officer and now our acting CFO, will conclude our prepared remarks with a look at the numbers for the quarter and guidance going forward. Neil is assuming the responsibilities of Scott Ray, who’s taken a medical leave of absence for the next up to two months to recovery from major back surgery that he had earlier this week on Tuesday. We wish Scott a speedy recovery and we’re fortunate to have someone as talented as Neil, who spent almost ten years working with me at United Online, to step in for Scott while he is recuperating.

Before I get started, I'd like to mention a PowerPoint presentation that summarizes the fourth quarter and full year 2008 financial results and operating metrics and you can download a copy of this presentation on our internet homepage at www.unitedonline.com within the Investor Relation’s section right next to the earnings press release and I would encourage you to do so. It’s a very comprehensive looking company.

Let’s talk about the Q408 quarterly highlights. I’m really pleased with the fourth quarter performance that we achieved in a very much deteriorating economic environment in the U.S. and in Europe. United Online is clearly non immune from the economic uncertainty, but our results demonstrate that we managed our business very well relative to the economic environment and the competitive set in everyone of our operating segments.

There’s four key highlights I hope you’ll take away from this call today on our Q408 results. One, we delivered another record in the fourth quarter and in the full year 2008 for adjusted OIBIDA, excluding the FTD acquisition to give you a valid comparison. We’ve now achieved seven consecutive years on increased adjusted OIBIDA dating all the way back to 2001.

Read the rest of this transcript for free on seekingalpha.com