Pandora's mobile ad sales pass $100M for the quarter

The Internet's biggest radio service increased a key measure of how much revenue it gets from the commercials you hear when you listen on your mobile device, even as its bottom line turned red.

Pandora Media, the operator of the Web's top radio service, is squeezing more juice out of its mobile advertising, with revenue from the ads crossing the $100 million mark for the first time in the latest quarter.

Thursday, Pandora reported that a financial measure called RPM, which is how much revenue it gets from 1,000 ad impressions, rose again for its mobile advertising. The company's new chief executive, Brian McAndrews -- an advertising executive who joined the online radio service in September -- said the company would continue to invest aggressively, a chord his predecessor, Joe Kennedy, struck in the previous quarter, too.

Pandora in the middle of an effort to become an advertising-powered heavyweight alongside its terrestrial radio rivals, and has been bulking up with moves like hiring McAndrews, building up a local ad-sales force, and integrating into the forums that advertisers turn to to make their media buys.

It posted a loss of $1.7 million, or a penny a share, compared with a year-earlier profit of $2.1 million, or a penny a share. Stripping out unusual costs, per-share profit was a penny higher at 6 cents, hitting the upper band of the company's May forecast for 3 cents and 6 cents a share.

Revenue climbed 50 percent to $180 million, better than the company's prediction for $174 million to $179 million.

Pandora's guidance for the current quarter was in line with what analysts were expecting.

Investors were cautious about the results, with shares down 2.5 percent to $28.94 in after-hours trading, though Pandora's stock has nearly quadrupled in the last year, giving room for a pullback.

 

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