‘Talent Solutions’ help LinkedIn post higher financial results than expected

6 Feb 2015

Business social network LinkedIn posted fourth-quarter revenues of US$643m, up 44pc on the same quarter a year earlier and almost US$40m above analysts’ predictions.

Premium subscribers – those that pay to enjoy better visibility, email and search tools that can help them find jobs, identify hiring prospects or generate business leads – represent 19pc of the total revenues and remains one of the key revenue streams for the company.

The pricing structure is changing for its Premium service, with Forbes reporting last month that there were concerns that price hikes could dissuade subscribers. That doesn’t seem to be the case now, though.

The real money is in Talent Solutions

However, it’s LinkedIn’s hiring business, called Talent Solutions, which represents well more than half of its revenues, with the company adding 3,000 new customers to that arm in the fourth quarter.

Indeed its growth has outstripped the overall 44pc, coming in above 50pc for the past three quarters, helped by significant expansion outside of the US, notably in China.

Almost 70pc of LinkedIn’s nearly 350m members are from outside the US, with 8m from China – the company has also seen its monthly unique visitors numbers rise form 76m last year to 93m now.

According to TechCrunch, LinkedIn has more than 3m active job listings on its platform, “a 10x increase from last year”. This has been key in a quarter that has seen little movement on the acquisition front.

Changes for the better, it seems

Last month, LinkedIn rolled out a slight reconfiguration of its user interface, with users now gaining better analytics from the top of their homepage. Elsewhere, connection activities have been streamlined on the right-hand side of the page, and the dashboard has undergone more changes.

“In the fourth quarter, more than 75pc of new members came to LinkedIn from outside the United States,” said Jeff Weiner, LinkedIn’s chief executive.

“The fourth quarter capped another successful year for LinkedIn, which was marked by steady member growth and strong financial results. We continued to make significant progress against a number of multi-year, strategic initiatives, including mobile, jobs, content and global expansion.”

LinkedIn image via Shutterstock

Gordon Hunt was a journalist with Silicon Republic