comScore, Inc. (SCOR)

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ComScore, Inc. (SCOR)

F1Q09 Earnings Call

April 30, 2009, 5:00 pm ET


Magid M. Abraham – President & CEO

Kenneth Tarpey – CFO


Youssef Squali - Jefferies & Co.

Troy Mastin - William Blair & Company

Jeetil Patel - Deutsche Bank Securities

Heath Terry - Friedman, Billings, Ramsey & Co.

Sandeep Aggarwal - Collins Stewart

Jason Helfstein - Oppenheimer & Co.

Megan Freeman – William Blair and Co.

John Blacklege – Credit Suisse

Analyst Rob on behalf of William Morrison - Thinkpanmure

James Cakmak - Sidoti & Co.

Analyst Clark on behalf of Mark May - Needham & Company



Good day and welcome to the first quarter 2009 comScore, Incorporated earnings conference call. (Operator instructions)

I will now turn the call over to your host for today, Mr. Ken Tarpey, Chief Financial Officer. You may begin, sir.

Ken Tarpey

Thank you and good afternoon and welcome to comScore’s earning call for the first quarter of 2009. I’m Ken Tarpey, the Chief Financial Officer of comScore. On the call with me today is Magid Abraham, comScore’s President, CEO, and co-founder.

Before we begin, please allow me to read the following statement to inform you of certain Safe Harbor provisions under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. During the course of today's call, as well as during any question and answer periods that may follow, representatives of the company may make forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 regarding future events or financial performance of the company that involve risks and uncertainties, including without limitation, the expected strength of comScore's business, expectations regarding the growth of its customer base and customer renewal rates, expectations regarding new markets, expectations regarding cost control measures, expectations regarding investment in new product and technologies, assumptions related to the state of the economy and the global market environment, assumptions and expectations of respected tax rates and net operating carry-forwards, and forecasts of future financial performance, including related growth rates and assumptions for the second quarter and the full year of 2009.

Such statements are only predictions based on management's current expectations. Actual events or results could differ materially from those predictions due to a number of risks and uncertainties, including those enumerated in the documents comScore files from time to time with the SEC.

Those documents specifically include, but are not limited to, comScore's Form 8-K filed earlier today relating to the subject matter of this earnings call, comScore's Form 10-K for the period ending December 31, 2008. These filings may contain and identify important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in our projections or forward-looking statements.

We caution you not to place undue reliance on any forward-looking statements included in these presentations which speak only as of today. We do not undertake any obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statements to reflect new information after today's call or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.

I will now turn the call over to Magid.

Magid Abraham

Thank you, Ken, and welcome aboard, and thanks for those of you who dialed on our webcast and joining us for our first quarter 2009 earnings conference call.

As we announced last week, Ken Tarpey has joined us as CFO to succeed John Green, who is taking on new responsibilities at comScore as Executive Vice President and head of Human Capital.

We are very excited to have Ken join us on this call and at comScore. Ken’s extensive experience at a number of quality, public, and private companies, perhaps best exemplified by his CFO of the Year Award from the Northern Virginia Technology Counsel, in addition to his depth and breadth of knowledge will be an asset for comScore as we move forward and I hope you will enjoy working with him.

Turning to our first quarter results, we are pleased to have or exceeded our financial expectations for the quarter, particularly with the continuing soft economy.

Revenue in the first quarter was at the upper end of our guided range at $30.6 million which was up 16% from the Q108. With continued diligent cost management, comScore delivered bottom line results that were above our expectation.

GAAP net income was $277,000 or $0.01 a share compared to a guidance of $0.01 to $0.02. The Q109 results were impacted by a higher than expected tax rate of over 80%.

Adjusted net income was $4.2 million or $0.14 per share compared to a guidance of $0.09 to $0.10 per share and adjusted EBITDA came in at $5.4 million, well above the guidance of $3.8 to $4.3 million and adjusted EBITDA margin of 18%.

Within revenue, subscription was $26.5 million or 87% of total revenue. Subscription revenue was up 23% from Q108.

While price pressure has incrementally increased and upselling has been more moderate as the economic environment continues to squeeze budgets, we continue to deliver strong renewal rates in the first quarter that remain above the 90% on a dollar basis.

Project revenue of $4.1 million was down 16% from Q108 with anticipated softness because of pressure on our customers’ budget.

Looking at revenue in a little bit more detail, international business represented 15% of the revenue in the first quarter, up from Q408. We believe this international growth reflects the impact potential of newer geographies of Latin America, Europe, and Asia that we continue to pursue.

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