MyPoints Reports Lower Earnings for Fourth Quarter of 2008

February 20, 2009 · 0 comments

It’s no big secret that number one, the fourth quarter is the time when most retailers get “into the black,” and number two, the U.S. economy is struggling which is impacting retail sales. So, it’s not much of a surprise that according to United Online’s quarterly conference call with stock analysts, published yesterday on, MyPoints reported lower earnings than usual for Q4.
United Online’s chairman Mark Goldston noted that, despite revenue growth in the first three quarters of the year, “During the fourth quarter, we experienced our first year-over-year revenue decline at MyPoints since we acquired the company three years ago.” It wasn’t unanticipated, he said, knowing that the economy was sluggish and MyPoints uses an advertiser-based revenue model (as opposed to, which derives its revenue from paid subscriptions). He said that MyPoints deliberately underspent its budget to account for this.
MyPoints is part of United Online’s Classmates Media segment of the company, which did very well overall, so no worries. (If you want to join MyPoints and kick back a buck or two to CompareRewards, click here — thanks!)
Goldston goes on to talk about MyPoints’ new President, Matt Wisk, who was promoted to this position in the last quarter. “One of the strategies that we expect Matt and his team to pursue further is to go beyond where we are and further expand the product offerings such as internet search, market research, and the gains that leverage the strong demand for the MyPoints currency, which is points, and this is across all of our active members.”
In discussing another of UNTD’s companies, FTD, Goldston mentioned the cross-marketing that’s been going on between MyPoints and FTD, even referencing the now-infamous “free $15 FTD gift cards” being given away with every MyPoints redemption. Wonder if the investors will fall for that gimmick like the MyPoints members did. ;)
In summary — no big surprises on the call. MyPoints struggled through its traditionally strongest quarter with lower earnings than it had in the last few years, but since they’re in a business unit with, which is (strangely enough, imho) doing strong, there’s no real cause for alarm…yet.

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