Earnings may have been surprising but the news is still bad. SNAP still has a bunch of problems including a monstrous CEO pay package.
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SNAP - Snap Inc - Company Profile
Snap Inc. operates as a camera company. It offers Snapchat, a camera application that helps people to communicate through short videos and images. The company also provides a suite of content tools for partners to build, edit, and publish snaps and attachments based on editorial content; and Spectacles, which are sunglasses that capture video from a human perspective. The company was formerly known as Snapchat, Inc. and changed its name to Snap Inc. in September 2016. Snap Inc. was founded in 2010 and is headquartered in Venice, California. Company description from FinViz.com.
Snap reported better than expected earnings but it was still ugly. They suggested they could be cash flow positive by the end of 2018. Analysts were not impressed. They reported an adjusted EBITDA loss of $159 million and negative free cash flow of $198 million. This was worse than the year ago quarter. At the current rate they may burn another $3 billion in cash before reaching breakeven earnings and they may have to do a secondary offering in 2020 to remain afloat according to Citigroup. They downgraded SNAP to a sell with a $14 price target.
For all of 2017 they lost $720 million but the CEO paid himself $639 million. There is a serious disconnect here and investors do not like the CEO of companies to be rewarded when the company is doing poorly.
Their recent redesign of the platform is hated by everyone. There was a 1.2 million-name petition on Change.org demanding the new app be rolled back to the prior app. The CEO said not to worry, you will get used to the new app and you will like it. The uproar is so bad that the company finally had to respond saying they would push out a few changes to the most hated feature and see if users could live with it. I would say customer service is not a strong point.
Sell short SNAP shares, currently $17.45, stop loss $18.55.
Alternate position: Buy April $16 put, currently 80 cents. Stop loss $19.05.
Entry disclaimer: To avoid an unfavorable entry point, we will not launch a new play if the stock gaps more than $1.00 at the market open.