LendingTree Introduces 2020 Guidance Ahead Of Investor Day
The Analyst and Investor event is being hosted in
"2019 has been another monumental year at
Financial Outlook - 2020
- Revenue is anticipated to be in the range of
$1,250 - $1,300 million, representing growth of 13% - 18% over the midpoint of full-year 2019 guidance of $1,105 million.
- Variable marketing margin is anticipated to be in the range of
$450 - $470 million.
- Adjusted EBITDA is anticipated to be in the range of
$225 - $235 million, up 12% - 17% over the midpoint of full-year 2019 guidance of $201 million.
LendingTree reports Variable Marketing Margin and Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization, as adjusted for certain items discussed below ("Adjusted EBITDA") as non-GAAP measures supplemental to GAAP.
Variable Marketing Margin is defined as revenue less Variable Marketing Expense. Variable Marketing Expense is defined as the expense attributable to variable costs paid for advertising, direct marketing and related expenses, including the portion of cost of revenue attributable to costs paid for advertising re-sold to third parties, and excluding overhead, fixed costs and personnel-related expenses. The majority of these variable advertising costs are expressly intended to drive traffic to our websites and these variable advertising costs are included in selling and marketing expense on the company's consolidated statements of operations and consolidated income. When advertising inventory is re-sold to third parties, the proceeds of such transactions are included in revenue for the purposes of calculating Variable Marketing Margin, and the costs of such re-sold advertising are included in cost of revenue in the Company's consolidated statements of operations and consolidated income and are included in Variable Marketing Expense for purposes of calculating Variable Marketing Margin. Variable Marketing Margin is a measure of the operating efficiency of the Company's operating model, measuring revenue after subtracting variable marketing costs that directly influence revenue. The Company's operating model is highly sensitive to the amount and efficiency of variable marketing expenditures, and the Company's proprietary systems are able to make rapidly changing decisions concerning the deployment of variable marketing expenditures (primarily but not exclusively online and mobile advertising placement) based on proprietary and sophisticated analytics. Variable Marketing Margin is a primary metric by which the Company measures the effectiveness of its marketing efforts.
EBITDA is defined as net income from continuing operations excluding interest, income taxes, amortization of intangibles and depreciation. Adjusted EBITDA is defined as EBITDA excluding (1) non-cash compensation expense, (2) non-cash impairment charges, (3) gain/loss on disposal of assets, (4) restructuring and severance expenses, (5) litigation settlements, contingencies and legal fees for certain patent litigation, (6) acquisitions and dispositions income or expense (including with respect to changes in fair value of contingent consideration), and (7) one-time items. Adjusted EBITDA is a primary metric by which LendingTree evaluates the operating performance of its businesses, on which its marketing expenditures and internal budgets are based and by which management and many employees are compensated.
The most directly comparable GAAP measure for both Variable Marketing Margin and Adjusted EBITDA is net income from continuing operations.
LendingTree endeavors to compensate for the limitations of these non-GAAP measures by also providing the comparable GAAP measures with equal or greater prominence and descriptions of the reconciling items, including quantifying such items, to derive the non-GAAP measures. However, LendingTree is not able to provide a reconciliation of projected Variable Marketing Margin or Adjusted EBITDA to the most directly comparable expected GAAP results due to the unknown effect, timing and potential significance of the effects of legal matters, tax considerations, and income and expense from changes in fair value of contingent consideration from acquisitions. Expenses associated with legal matters, tax consequences, and income and expense from changes in fair value of contingent consideration from acquisitions have in the past, and may in the future, significantly affect GAAP results in a particular period. These non-GAAP measures may not be comparable to similarly titled measures used by other companies.
Safe Harbor Statement Under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995
The matters contained in the discussion above may be considered to be "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Securities Act of 1933 and the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended by the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Those statements include statements regarding the intent, belief or current expectations or anticipations of
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