Monster Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE:MWW), which put itself up for sale in March 2012, said today that it will repurchase shares if the company doesn’t find a suitor. For the first time since putting itself up for sale, the company announced quarterly revenues above analysts’ expectations. Shares of the company surged about 11 percent after the earnings announcement.
The online recruitment company is badly hurt by poor job markets in Europe and the United States that generate most of its revenues. Rising competition from social networking sites has also affected Monster Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE:MWW)’s revenues. Since March 2012, the company has closed its operations in Mexico, Turkey and Brazil; and sold off its loss-making operations in China. Monster Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE:MWW) CEO Sal Iannuzzi warned earlier that the talks to sell the company were very slow.
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However, after the earnings conference Sal Iannuzzi said that the company is gearing up to resume its share repurchase program. The owner of Monster.com authorized a $200 million share buyback program. The company had earlier approved a $250 million buyback plan that expired in April, but it spent only $107 million on repurchase as Monster Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE:MWW) started looking for a sale opportunity. David Einhorn of Greenlight Capital is reportedly shorting this stock.
First Quarter Earnings
Though revenues for the first quarter declined 9.3 percent to $211.9 million, that is better than the consensus estimate of $210.5 million. Profits fell 17 percent to $11.1 million or 10 cents a share, compared to $13.4 million in the same period a year ago. Excluding one-time items, profits came at 8 cents per share. The company expects 6-10 cents in the second quarter earnings.
Total revenues from North America fell 3 percent YoY, but rose 4 percent sequentially. The company said the U.S. economic and political outlook remains uncertain amid sequestration and less than expected job market recovery. Top Asian markets were India and South Korea. Though both those markets continue to generate healthy profits, the growth rate is slowing. Overall revenues from Asia-Pacific fell 10 percent YoY, and 6 percent sequentially. Europe continues to disappoint. Now even the strongest European economies are faltering. European revenues plunged 20 percent compared to the same period a year ago.
Monster Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE:MWW) shares surged 10.02 percent to $4.72 at 3:39 PM EDT.