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Unbabel and Intercom partner to provide multilingual messaging

Betty Tűndik

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Photo source: martechseries.com
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Enterprise Translation-as-a-Service provider Unbabel today announced the release of its Unbabel Chat app to Intercom’s App Store. Intercom, a customer messaging platform that helps businesses accelerate growth through better customer relationships, announced the launch of its App Store earlier this year. Today the App Store features more than 130 apps that help businesses and customers complete tasks inside the messenger.

The Unbabel app lets Intercom customers see inbound chat messages in their own language and respond to them in their customer’s preferred language rapidly, a big bonus for sales and support teams dealing with global queries. Unbabel can now share its services with Intercom customers globally and help more companies break down language barriers between enterprises and their customers around the world.

More than 30,000 businesses use Intercom to communicate with their customers. Intercom powers 500 million conversations a month and reaches over 1 billion unique people worldwide. Customers using the new integrated multilingual customer service chat include Monese, the award-winning globally-connected banking service, and Perkbox, one of the fastest growing global employee engagement platforms.

Automatically translated inbound messages means that customers can understand customer enquiries in other languages and handle them right away, writing a reply without having to consider the language barrier. The introduction of the built-in translation capability aims to shorten customer response times, improving the user experience and customer satisfaction.

Unbabel CEO Vasco Pedro commented: “As a platform, Intercom has been transforming global conversations for many years now, and with our app, we’re working together to break down language barriers to increase the volume and quality of those conversations. Together we’ve created a fully integrated translation pipeline to ensure customers around the world receive a native reply in near real time, a groundbreaking move for customer service and experience.”

Intercom’s Head of Platform Partnerships, Jeff Gardner, said: “We’re excited that Unbabel has joined the more than 130 other businesses that have chosen to develop apps on our platform. The Unbabel app breaks down language barriers and drives global personal communication between businesses and customers by helping people easily communicate across regions and languages.”

About Intercom
Intercom is the world’s first customer messaging platform to help internet businesses accelerate growth. Intercom is a new and better way for businesses to acquire, engage and retain customers and its modern products help sales, marketing and support to connect with customers and grow faster. Today Intercom powers more than 500 million monthly conversations and reaches over 1B+ people worldwide across our 30,000 paying customers.

About Unbabel
Unbabel’s “Translation as a Service” platform allows modern enterprises to understand and be understood by their customers in dozens of languages. Powered by state-of-the-art AI and refined by a global crowd of thousands, Unbabel helps global brands like Booking.com, Facebook, Skyscanner, easyJet, Under Armour and Rovio remove language as a concern, increasing customer satisfaction and building a more efficient customer service operation in the process. Backed by Scale Venture Partners, Notion, Microsoft Ventures, Salesforce Ventures, Samsung NEXT and Y Combinator, Unbabel is accelerating the shift to a world without language barriers.

Hi everyone! Nice to e-meet you! Here are a few things you should know about me.


I am a conscientious, open minded, adaptable to new experiences and ambitious Business Development Manager with a Bachelor's Degree in Economics - Banking, Finance and Accountancy. Through my studies I've also obtained many naturopathic and nutrition degrees as well. Part-time jobs have added marketing, network marketing, event management and store management skills to my experience through my career.


Through my career I have also been a Hotel Manager and owned a Bar/Restaurant & Internet Cafe. My online marketing and social media interactivity experience was gained when me and my husband started a business with an online/organic webshop & healthy lifestyle consultancy.


I've improved my English at Cambridge Academy of English - 2003, in Cambridge. I live a conscious lifestyle, and try to protect the ecosystem. Animal lover and capable of helping others without judgement or negative reactions, this is thanked to my knowledge in holistic therapies and the naturopathy courses I've followed.


I cannot leave far my spiritual growth and the continuous development in alternative and holistic therapies, so I'm learning at Kyron School of New Consciousness, receiving a Bio Energo-therapist diploma.


Thanks to all my experiences I've decided to venture into publishing and writting, while also continuing to learn many new things daily. I hope you enjoy reading my hand picked PICANTE News and check back for my weekly articles. You can find my articles and news digests in the following categories:


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Banking/Financial Services

Crypto Liquidity Aggregator, CoinDCX Raises Seed Financing from Bain Capital Ventures

Vlad Poptamas

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DCXtrade- Trade in 250+ markets from Binance, Huobi and HitBTC
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CoinDCX, an Estonia-domiciled global liquidity aggregator with R&D in Mumbai, India, raised a seed round of financing led by Bain Capital Ventures. Notable angels, including Sanjay Mehtaand Utsav Somani participated.

CoinDCX is a financial services aggregator and has versatile financial instruments and deep orderbooks that target a variety of trading use-cases. CoinDCX has gathered a user base of 50,000, and over a million dollars in average daily trading volume, both growing fast.

Funds will be used to scale technical infrastructure and introduce products that bring transparency and inclusivity to CoinDCX’s users.

“No single platform provides investors with a complete set of financial instruments to trade their digital assets. That’s why we created CoinDCX,” said Sumit Gupta, co-founder of CoinDCX. “You can trade in 200+ markets with leverage, buy crypto with fiat currencies and, starting soon, even trade in crypto derivatives. CoinDCX aims to empower investors by providing a single point of access to a complete crypto ecosystem.”.

“We have used our prolific seed program to invest aggressively into crypto and decentralized finance (DeFi) during the crypto winter, including decentralized money markets, derivatives markets, blockchain interoperability solutions, crypto exchanges, miners, prime brokers, and liquidity aggregators,” said Salil Deshpande, Managing Director at Bain Capital Ventures. “Ultimately, two parallel worlds will form to support the crypto asset class: a centralized system that mirrors the traditional financial system, but with many friction points removed, creating an on-ramp of fiat into the crypto world; and a decentralized, trust-less replica of the centralized system with protocols for each use-case. CoinDCX’s unique approach of leveraging existing technology and fostering liquidity is a critical ingredient in these worlds.”

Preparing for Crypto Regulations

“We strongly believe in a decentralized and disruptive future for the world economy. In the meantime, we are striving to build secure, professional and scalable crypto products for the masses. With cryptocurrency regulations around the corner and increasingly positive sentiments across the community, it is undoubtedly a great time to be in crypto,” said Neeraj Khandelwal, Co-Founder of CoinDCX.

“CoinDCX’s velocity of launching new features and attracting customer love has me excited as an early supporter. With India’s crypto-regulation coming soon, CoinDCX is well positioned to be at the forefront of the exciting world of digital assets trading,” said Utsav Somani of AngelList.

Website: www.coindcx.com

 

SOURCE CoinDCX

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Escalated Launches Real-Time Fraud Prevention and Monitoring SAAS Platform

Vlad Poptamas

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CEO Kyle Smith
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Escalated (www.escalated.io) recently announced the launch of their proprietary SAAS-platform designed to screen and stop malicious bot activity online. The service is available as either a monthly or annual subscription, both offering instant accessibility and easy implementation. Escalated has multiple tiered plans to suit a variety of individual, organization or company needs, regardless of size. And each plan offers a full-access free trial period.

With a focus on both security and affordability, Escalated is specifically designed to help monitor and safeguard websites, ad campaigns and other online activity from invalid traffic. Malicious bots create fraudulent ad impressions that routinely eat holes in advertising budgets. These attacks can also cause a wide variety of anomalies that skew data collection and analysis, harm business relationships, steal content, waste bandwidth and otherwise degrade valuable server resources.

“With margins in ad-tech being squeezed constantly, and the cost of ad-fraud on the rise, companies are dealing with the financial pain in the middle. We hope to solve that problem,” said Escalated CEO Kyle Smith.

The Escalated Solution

Escalated’s real-time pre-bid API eliminates bots on the fly, minimizing risk, and can be used to make bidding or rendering decisions. The post-bid fraud monitoring tags allow the collection of insights into overall traffic activity, making it easy to spot invalid traffic received by domain, referrer or partner sources.

Other Escalated features include:

  • General Web Security: Stops bots from stealing assets, or clicking on ads that follow links to clients’ landing pages. Prevents bots from scraping and copying content or scanning sites for future exploitable vulnerabilities.
  • Campaign Optimization: Bots can cause confusing analytics, offset KPIs and decimate marketing budgets. Escalated can track invalid traffic by domain, partner, source or geo. Clients can also send in costing data to track IVT by overall cost, enabling the creation of whitelists and blacklists.
  • Audience Management: Eliminates bots that pretend to be human audience members, allowing for pure and accurate data collection.
  • Content Locking: Keeps digital content safe from theft.
  • Resource Protection: Save server resources by denying fraudulent activity.
  • Threat Detection: Detect hard-to-find, incoming, or outright hidden fraudulent activity.
  • Ad Verification: Campaigns can be audited to ensure ads are running exactly where they are supposed to, for maximum effectiveness and use of advertising spend.

Malicious and fraudulent bot-activity is on the rise. Recent statistics place projected estimates for loss of ad-revenue due to ad-fraud in the tens-of-billions of dollars. This type of activity has long become a viable business model for career criminals, and many small business owners are either under-protected or not protected at all. Ad fraud continues to pose threats to both business relations and the industry in general. It can no longer be ignored.

SOURCE Escalated

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Bitauto Announces Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year 2018 Results

Vlad Poptamas

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Reading Time: 13 minutes

 

Bitauto Holdings Limited (“Bitauto” or the “Company”) (NYSE: BITA), a leading provider of internet content & marketing services, and transaction services for China’s fast-growing automotive industry, today announced its unaudited financial results for the fourth quarter and fiscal year ended December 31, 2018[1] .

Bitauto Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year 2018 Highlights

  • Revenue in the fourth quarter of 2018 was RMB3.12 billion (US$453.7 million), a 25.2% increase from the corresponding period in 2017, exceeding the high-end of the Company guidance. Revenue in fiscal year 2018 was RMB10.58 billion (US$1.54 billion), a 31.0% increase from 2017.
  • Gross profit in the fourth quarter of 2018 was RMB1.69 billion (US$246.0 million), an 8.9% increase from the corresponding period in 2017. Gross profit in fiscal year 2018 was RMB6.34 billion (US$921.4 million), a 16.7% increase from 2017.
  • Loss from operations in the fourth quarter of 2018 was RMB325.3 million (US$47.3 million), compared to a loss from operations of RMB645.2 million (US$93.8 million) in the corresponding period in 2017. Loss from operations in fiscal year 2018 was RMB465.5 million (US$67.7 million), compared to a loss from operations of RMB1.08 billion(US$156.6 million) in 2017.
  • Non-GAAP income from operations in the fourth quarter of 2018 was RMB265.4 million (US$38.6 million), a 183.9% increase from the corresponding period in 2017. Non-GAAP income from operations in fiscal year 2018 was RMB1.11 billion (US$161.6 million), a 26.7% increase from 2017.
  • Net loss in the fourth quarter of 2018 was RMB398.3 million (US$57.9 million), compared to a net loss of RMB803.4 million (US$116.8 million) in the corresponding period in 2017. Net loss in fiscal year 2018 was RMB679.3 million(US$98.8 million), compared to a net loss of RMB1.43 billion (US$207.5 million) in 2017.
  • Non-GAAP net income in the fourth quarter of 2018 was RMB199.0 million (US$28.9 million), a 101.0% increase from the corresponding period in 2017. Non-GAAP net income in fiscal year 2018 was RMB934.7 million (US$135.9 million), a 30.1% increase from 2017.
  • Net loss attributable to Bitauto in the fourth quarter of 2018 was RMB416.7 million (US$60.6 million). Net loss attributable to Bitauto in fiscal year 2018 was RMB608.4 million (US$88.5 million).
  • Non-GAAP net income attributable to Bitauto in the fourth quarter of 2018 was RMB118.6 million (US$17.2 million). Non-GAAP net income attributable to Bitauto in fiscal year 2018 was RMB708.9 million (US$103.1 million).
  • Basic and diluted net loss per ADS in the fourth quarter of 2018 was RMB5.38 (US$0.78) and RMB5.38 (US$0.78), respectively. Basic and diluted net loss per ADS in fiscal year 2018 was RMB8.13 (US$1.18) and RMB8.13 (US$1.18), respectively.
  • Non-GAAP basic and diluted net income per ADS in the fourth quarter of 2018 was RMB1.58 (US$0.23) and RMB1.45 (US$0.21), respectively. Non-GAAP basic and diluted net income per ADS in fiscal year 2018 was RMB9.62(US$1.40) and RMB8.90 (US$1.29), respectively.

Mr. Andy Zhang, chief executive officer of Bitauto, said, “We were pleased to conclude 2018 with robust growth across all three of our business lines, amid softer passenger vehicle sales in China during the second half of the year. Our full year revenues increased by 31.0% over the previous year to RMB10.58 billion, and revenue in our advertising and subscription business reached RMB4.07 billion, representing 13.5% year-over-year growth. In particular, our core advertising and subscription business, which excludes contributions from subsidiaries in which we hold controlling interests, grew by 17.9% year-over-year for the full year. We also maintained strong growth in our transaction services business, with full year revenues increasing by 49.8% year-over-year to RMB5.37 billion. In our digital marketing solutions business, we recorded healthy revenue growth of 25.7% to RMB1.13 billion for the full year.”

“Since the introduction of our upgraded Bitauto media app in October 2018, we have seen a significant surge in traffic, user time spent, and the number of sales leads generated. According to Questmobile, in February 2019 daily active users of the Bitauto media app increased by 135% as compared to October 2018. In our subscription business, we further improved our ARPU in the fourth quarter attributable to the migration of more members to our premium service packages. We also made progress in building out our independent dealer network and covered over 22,000 independent dealers in the fourth quarter. As of the end of this February, we had developed over 1,000 paying customers among the independent dealers.”

“In our transaction services business, Yixin delivered steady results as its services continued to gain traction in the market. Yixin facilitated approximately 143,000 financed automobile transactions in the fourth quarter, while loan facilitation services contributed 60% of Yixin’s total financed automobile transactions, up significantly from 24% in the previous quarter. We expect Yixin’s loan facilitation services to continue growing in the following quarters.”

“Looking to the year ahead, we are cautiously optimistic about the outlook for China’s automobile industry, and we remain confident in our core business strategies to build Bitauto into China’s top online auto media and transaction services platform. First, we will continue to improve content and user experience on the upgraded Bitauto media app to further solidify our leading industry position. With a wider range of engaging, user-centric content, our Bitauto media app’s ability to fulfill user needs across the entire automobile consumption cycle including automobile research, purchase, ownership and replacement is driving popularity among automobile consumers. Moreover, since a majority of users log on before they browse the app’s content, we are able to optimize our user profile database and improve the quality of the sales leads generated. We believe our upgraded media app will continue to enhance the value of the Bitauto brand and help reduce our customer acquisition costs going forward. Second, we will drive incremental revenue growth in our advertising business through data products which provide automakers with integrated results-driven marketing solutions. Building upon our extensive industry knowledge as well as our AI and big data analytic capabilities, our data products will allow automakers to roll-out highly targeted advertisements, content and marketing campaigns to achieve higher conversion results. Third, we will further develop our independent dealer network and expect to start monetization in 2019. As our subscription products already enjoy a high penetration rate in the new car 4S dealer market, we will look to further drive subscription revenue growth by offering tailored solutions for independent dealers, a vast and under-tapped market segment in China. Fourth, Yixin will remain focused on rapidly expanding its loan facilitation business, which is highly scalable and features a more attractive margin profile than its self-operated financing business. We believe that Yixin is well-positioned to gain market share in the automobile finance industry.”

Mr. Ming Xu, chief financial officer of Bitauto, said, “We achieved solid top-line growth in the fourth quarter of 2018, with strong results across our advertising and subscription as well as transaction services businesses. Yixin saw healthy top-line results driven by solid growth in its total financed transaction volume, especially the rapid growth in its loan facilitation business. While we incurred additional marketing expenses during the quarter due to marketing campaigns to support our updated media app, we still saw margin expansion within our advertising and subscription business for the full year. Looking forward, with these factors behind us, we are optimistic about our margin outlook as we implement cost control measures and as Yixin enhances profitability through accelerating growth in its loan facilitation business.”

Adoption of New Revenue Guidance ASC 606

In May 2014, the FASB issued a new revenue guidance ASC Topic 606, “Revenue from Contracts with Customers.” Bitauto has completed its assessment and noted the most significant impact is the change from presentation of value-added tax (“VAT”) on a gross basis to a net basis. Bitauto adopted the new revenue guidance starting from January 1, 2018 by applying the modified retrospective approach. Therefore, operating results for reporting periods beginning after January 1, 2018 are presented under Topic 606, while prior period amounts are not restated and continue to be reported in accordance with the Company’s historic accounting method under Topic 605.

To provide investors with a meaningful year-over-year comparison, Bitauto has provided reconciliation tables for the impact of adopting this new revenue guidance for the fourth quarter and fiscal year 2018 and the corresponding period in 2017. Other than in the Company’s consolidated statements of operations, the operating results are discussed and analyzed under the new revenue guidance, including those for the comparative period in 2017.

For the Three Months Ended December 31, 2018

Under ASC 605

VAT adjustments

Under ASC 606

RMB

RMB

RMB

(in thousands)

Revenue                                            

3,361,073

(241,518)

3,119,555

 – Advertising and subscription business

1,251,458

(88,591)

1,162,867

 – Transaction services business

1,689,402

(126,383)

1,563,019

 – Digital marketing solutions business

420,213

(26,544)

393,669

Cost of revenue

(1,648,530)

220,287

(1,428,243)

Gross profit

1,712,543

(21,231)

1,691,312

Loss from operations

(325,251)

(325,251)

Net loss

(398,297)

(398,297)

For the Three Months Ended December 31, 2017

Under ASC 605

VAT adjustments

Under ASC 606

RMB

RMB

RMB

(in thousands)

Revenue 

2,690,316

(198,198)

2,492,118

 – Advertising and subscription business

1,098,598

(89,438)

1,009,160

 – Transaction services business

1,269,862

(90,542)

1,179,320

 – Digital marketing solutions business

321,856

(18,218)

303,638

Cost of revenue

(1,111,036)

171,463

(939,573)

Gross profit

1,579,280

(26,735)

1,552,545

Loss from operations

(645,177)

(645,177)

Net loss

(803,361)

(803,361)

For the Year Ended December 31, 2018

Under ASC 605

VAT adjustments

Under ASC 606

RMB

RMB

RMB

(in thousands)

Revenue 

11,384,102

(804,493)

10,579,609

 – Advertising and subscription business

4,384,232

(310,014)

4,074,218

 – Transaction services business

5,778,114

(407,243)

5,370,871

 – Digital marketing solutions business

1,221,756

(87,236)

1,134,520

Cost of revenue

(4,977,386)

732,988

(4,244,398)

Gross profit

6,406,716

(71,505)

6,335,211

Loss from operations

(465,506)

(465,506)

Net loss

(679,316)

(679,316)

For the Year Ended December 31, 2017

Under ASC 605

VAT adjustments

Under ASC 606

RMB

RMB

RMB

(in thousands)

Revenue 

8,751,259

(674,590)

8,076,669

 – Advertising and subscription business

3,922,158

(334,118)

3,588,040

 – Transaction services business

3,872,244

(286,309)

3,585,935

 – Digital marketing solutions business

956,857

(54,163)

902,694

Cost of revenue

(3,234,680)

585,066

(2,649,614)

Gross profit

5,516,579

(89,524)

5,427,055

Loss from operations

(1,076,593)

(1,076,593)

Net loss

(1,426,988)

(1,426,988)

Bitauto Fourth Quarter 2018 Results

Bitauto reported revenue of RMB3.12 billion (US$453.7 million) for the fourth quarter of 2018, representing a 25.2% increase from the corresponding period in 2017. The increase in revenue was attributable to the growth of the Company’s transaction services business, advertising and subscription business and digital marketing solutions business.

  • Revenue from the advertising and subscription business for the fourth quarter of 2018 was RMB1.16 billion(US$169.1 million), representing a 15.2% increase from RMB1.01 billion (US$146.8 million) in the corresponding period in 2017.
  • Revenue from the transaction services business for the fourth quarter of 2018 was RMB1.56 billion (US$227.3 million), representing a 32.5% increase from RMB1.18 billion (US$171.5 million) in the corresponding period in 2017, mainly attributable to the revenue growth of self-operated financing business and loan facilitation services.
  • Revenue from the digital marketing solutions business for the fourth quarter of 2018 was RMB393.7 million(US$57.3 million), representing a 29.7% increase from RMB303.6 million (US$44.2 million) in the corresponding period in 2017.

Cost of revenue for the fourth quarter of 2018 was RMB1.43 billion (US$207.7 million), representing a year-over-year increase of 52.0% from the corresponding period in 2017. The increase was primarily due to increased funding costs related to Yixin’s self-operated financing business, increased commissions associated with Yixin’s loan facilitation services, and increased costs associated with sales of automobiles. Cost of revenue as a percentage of revenue in the fourth quarter of 2018 was 45.8%, compared to 37.7% in the corresponding period in 2017.

Gross profit for the fourth quarter of 2018 was RMB1.69 billion (US$246.0 million), representing an 8.9% increase from the corresponding period in 2017.

Selling and administrative expenses were RMB1.94 billion (US$282.5 million) for the fourth quarter of 2018, representing a 7.0% decrease from the corresponding period in 2017.

Product development expenses were RMB133.4 million (US$19.4 million) for the fourth quarter of 2018, representing an 18.2% decrease from the corresponding period in 2017.

Share-based compensation, which was allocated to related operating expense line items, was RMB421.6 million(US$61.3 million) in the fourth quarter of 2018, compared to RMB527.7 million (US$76.8 million) in the corresponding period in 2017. The decrease was mainly due to the options granted by Yixin Group Limited (“Yixin”) (SEHK: 2858) to its employees in the second half of 2017.

Loss from operations in the fourth quarter of 2018 was RMB325.3 million (US$47.3 million), compared to a loss from operations of RMB645.2 million (US$93.8 million) in the corresponding period in 2017.

Non-GAAP income from operations in the fourth quarter of 2018 was RMB265.4 million (US$38.6 million), a 183.9% increase from the corresponding period in 2017.

Income tax expense in the fourth quarter of 2018 was RMB45.3 million (US$6.6 million), compared to an income tax expense of RMB2.6 million (US$0.4 million) in the corresponding period in 2017. This increase was mainly attributable to the impact of increased income from operations for the fourth quarter of 2018.

Net loss in the fourth quarter of 2018 was RMB398.3 million (US$57.9 million), compared to a net loss of RMB803.4 million (US$116.8 million) in the corresponding period in 2017. Net loss attributable to Bitauto in the fourth quarter of 2018 was RMB416.7 million (US$60.6 million). Basic and diluted net loss per ADS, each representing one ordinary share, in the fourth quarter of 2018 amounted to RMB5.38 (US$0.78) and RMB5.38 (US$0.78), respectively, taking into consideration of the accretion to redeemable noncontrolling interests amounting to RMB7.1 million (US$1.0 million).

Non-GAAP net income in the fourth quarter of 2018 was RMB199.0 million (US$28.9 million), a 101.0% increase from the corresponding period in 2017. Non-GAAP net income attributable to Bitauto in the fourth quarter of 2018 was RMB118.6 million (US$17.2 million). Non-GAAP basic and diluted net income per ADS in the fourth quarter of 2018 amounted to RMB1.58 (US$0.23) and RMB1.45 (US$0.21), respectively, taking into consideration of the accretion to redeemable noncontrolling interests amounting to RMB7.1 million (US$1.0 million).

Cash provided by operating activities, cash provided by investing activities, and cash used in financing activities in the fourth quarter of 2018 were RMB489.2 million (US$71.2 million), RMB1.40 billion (US$203.7 million), and RMB1.49 billion (US$217.2 million), respectively.

Bitauto Fiscal Year 2018 Results

Revenue in 2018 was RMB10.58 billion (US$1.54 billion), representing a 31.0% increase from 2017. The increase in revenue was attributable to the growth of the Company’s transaction services business, advertising and subscription business and digital marketing solutions business.

  • Revenue from the advertising and subscription business in 2018 was RMB4.07 billion (US$592.6 million), representing a 13.5% increase from RMB3.59 billion (US$521.9 million) in 2017.
  • Revenue from the transaction services business in 2018 was RMB5.37 billion (US$781.2 million), representing a 49.8% increase from RMB3.59 billion (US$521.6 million) in 2017, mainly attributable to the revenue growth of self-operated financing business and loan facilitation services.
  • Revenue from the digital marketing solutions business in 2018 was RMB1.13 billion (US$165.0 million), representing a 25.7% increase from RMB902.7 million (US$131.3 million) in 2017.

Cost of revenue in 2018 was RMB4.24 billion (US$617.3 million), representing a year-over-year increase of 60.2% from 2017. The increase was primarily due to increased funding costs related to Yixin’s self-operated financing business, increased commissions associated with Yixin’s loan facilitation services, and increased costs associated with sales of automobiles. Cost of revenue as a percentage of revenue in 2018 was 40.1%, compared to 32.8% in 2017.

Gross profit in 2018 was RMB6.34 billion (US$921.4 million), representing a 16.7% increase from 2017.

Selling and administrative expenses were RMB6.37 billion (US$926.6 million) in 2018, representing a 5.1% increase from 2017.

Product development expenses were RMB611.1 million (US$88.9 million) in 2018, representing an 8.0% increase from 2017.

Share-based compensation, which was allocated to related operating expense line items, was RMB896.4 million(US$130.4 million) in 2018, compared to RMB1.19 billion (US$172.5 million) in 2017. The decrease was mainly due to the options granted by Yixin Group Limited (“Yixin”) (SEHK: 2858) to its employees in the second half of 2017.

Loss from operations in 2018 was RMB465.5 million (US$67.7 million), compared to a loss from operations of RMB1.08 billion (US$156.6 million) in 2017.

Non-GAAP income from operations in 2018 was RMB1.11 billion (US$161.6 million), a 26.7% increase from 2017.

Income tax expense in 2018 was RMB175.9 million (US$25.6 million), compared to an income tax expense of RMB203.8 million (US$29.6 million) in 2017. The decrease was primarily attributable to the impact of preferential tax rate applicable to some of the Company’s subsidiaries in China.

Net loss in 2018 was RMB679.3 million (US$98.8 million), compared to a net loss of RMB1.43 billion (US$207.5 million) in 2017. Net loss attributable to Bitauto in 2018 was RMB608.4 million (US$88.5 million). Basic and diluted net loss per ADS, each representing one ordinary share, in 2018 amounted to RMB8.13 (US$1.18) and RMB8.13 (US$1.18), respectively, taking into consideration of the accretion to redeemable noncontrolling interests amounting to RMB28.1 million (US$4.1 million).

Non-GAAP net income in 2018 was RMB934.7 million (US$135.9 million), a 30.1% increase from 2017. Non-GAAP net income attributable to Bitauto in 2018 was RMB708.9 million (US$103.1 million). Non-GAAP basic and diluted net income per ADS in 2018 amounted to RMB9.62 (US$1.40) and RMB8.90 (US$1.29), respectively, taking into consideration of the accretion to redeemable noncontrolling interests amounting to RMB28.1 million (US$4.1 million).

As of December 31, 2018, the Company had cash and cash equivalents and restricted cash of RMB9.37 billion (US$1.36 billion). Cash provided by operating activities, cash used in investing activities, and cash provided by financing activities in 2018 were RMB678.0 million (US$98.6 million), RMB7.47 billion (US$1.09 billion), and RMB5.01 billion(US$728.8 million), respectively.

The number of employees totaled 8,316 as of December 31, 2018, including employees of entities in which Bitauto has acquired and holds controlling interests. This represented a 2.83% year-over-year decrease, primarily due to the decreased headcounts in Yixin, following its strategic de-emphasis of used automobile transaction facilitation services.

As of December 31, 2018, the Company had a total of 72,739,966 ordinary shares. Non-GAAP basic and diluted per ADS figures for the fourth quarter of 2018 were calculated using a weighted average of 70,269,652 and 76,702,982 ADSs, respectively. Non-GAAP basic and diluted per ADS figures for fiscal year 2018 were calculated using a weighted average of 71,305,353 and 77,717,370 ADSs, respectively. Each ADS represents one ordinary share of the Company.

Yixin Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year 2018 Highlights

In the fourth quarter of 2018, Bitauto’s controlled subsidiary Yixin, the primary operator of the Company’s transaction services business, facilitated approximately 143,000 financed automobile transactions, with the aggregate auto financing amount of approximately RMB11.30 billion (US$1.64 billion), through its loan facilitation services and self-operated financing business. In particular, Yixin’s third-party loan facilitation transactions continued to gain momentum, contributing 60% of the total financed automobile transaction volume in the fourth quarter, up from 24% in the previous quarter. In the fourth quarter of 2018, through its loan facilitation services for partner banks, Yixin facilitated approximately 86,000 financed automobile transactions, a year-over-year increase of approximately 11 times from the corresponding period in 2017.

In the fourth quarter of 2018, under U.S. GAAP, Yixin’s total revenues reached RMB1.59 billion (US$231.3 million); gross profit reached RMB614.7 million (US$89.4 million); net income was RMB17.3 million (US$2.5 million) and Non-GAAP net income was RMB119.2 million (US$17.3 million). Yixin’s Non-GAAP net income is calculated as net income excluding share-based compensation of RMB67.5 million (US$9.8 million), amortization of intangible assets resulting from asset and business acquisitions of RMB34.4 million (US$5.0 million), and offset by tax effect of RMB0.04 million (US$0.01 million). In the fourth quarter of 2018, Yixin entered into certain transactions with other subsidiaries of Bitauto, which have been eliminated upon Bitauto’s consolidation of Yixin. The revenue that Yixin recorded for the services provided to those subsidiaries of Bitauto amounted to RMB11.4 million (US$1.7 million).

For the year ended December 31, 2018, Yixin’s total financed automobile transactions increased by 21% year-over-year to approximately 484,000. The aggregate auto financing amount facilitated through its loan facilitation services and self-operated financing business was approximately RMB38.00 billion (US$5.53 billion), representing a 26% year-over-year increase. The accumulated total financed automobile transactions reached over 1.1 million as of December 31, 2018.

In 2018, Yixin cooperated with six banks and facilitated approximately 144,000 financed automobile transactions through its loan facilitation services, representing a 15 times year-over-year increase and approximately 30% of the total financed automobile transactions for the full year 2018.

For the year ended December 31, 2018, under U.S. GAAP, Yixin’s total revenues were RMB5.53 billion (US$804.7 million); gross profit reached RMB2.48 billion (US$360.0 million); net loss was RMB182.9 million (US$26.6 million) and Non-GAAP net income was RMB328.0 million (US$47.7 million). Yixin’s Non-GAAP net income is calculated as net loss excluding share-based compensation of RMB348.8 million (US$50.7 million), amortization of intangible assets resulting from asset and business acquisitions of RMB163.1 million (US$23.7 million), and offset by tax effect of RMB1.0 million (US$0.1 million). In 2018, Yixin entered into certain transactions with other subsidiaries of Bitauto, which were eliminated upon Bitauto’s consolidation of Yixin. The revenue that Yixin recorded for the services provided to those subsidiaries of Bitauto amounted to RMB96.0 million (US$14.0 million).

As of December 31, 2018, Yixin had cash and cash equivalents and restricted cash of RMB5.65 billion (US$822.4 million), total finance receivables of RMB36.98 billion (US$5.38 billion), and total borrowings, including bank borrowings and asset-backed securitization debt, of RMB30.20 billion (US$4.39 billion).

As of December 31, 2018, 90+ days (including 180+ days) past due ratio and 180+ days past due ratio for all the financed transactions (including the third-party loan facilitations) were 0.92% and 0.42%, respectively; 90+ days (including 180+ days) past due ratio and 180+ days past due ratio for Yixin’s self-operated financing business were 1.10% and 0.52%, respectively.

Under U.S. GAAP, Yixin’s provision for credit losses of finance receivables for the fourth quarter of 2018 was RMB80.8 million (US$11.8 million), and for the year ended December 31, 2018 was RMB519.0 million (US$75.5 million). The balance of provision for credit losses of finance receivables was RMB350.8 million (US$51.0 million) as of December 31, 2018.

As a controlled subsidiary of Bitauto listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, Yixin announced its consolidated financial statements under IFRS for fiscal year 2018. In order to help investors to understand the differences between IFRS and U.S. GAAP for Yixin’s operation results, a reconciliation was prepared and presented at the end of this earnings release.

First Quarter 2019 Outlook

Bitauto currently expects to generate revenue in the range of RMB2.47 billion (US$359.2 million) to RMB2.52billion (US$366.5 million) in the first quarter of 2019, representing a 13.8% to 16.1% increase from the corresponding period in 2018.

This forecast takes into consideration of seasonality factors in Bitauto’s business, and excludes any impact of foreign currency fluctuation. It reflects management’s current and preliminary view, which is subject to change.

Conference Call Information

Bitauto’s management will hold an earnings conference call at 8:15 AM on March 19, 2019 U.S. Eastern Time (8:15 PM on March 19, 2019 Beijing/Hong Kong time).

Dial-in details for the earnings conference call are as follows:

US:

+1-845-675-0437 or +1-866-519-4004

Hong Kong:

+852-3018-6771 or 800-906-601

China:

800-8190-121 or 400-6208-038

International:

+65-6713-5090

Conference ID:

9490302

A replay of the conference call may be accessed by phone at the following number until March 27, 2019:

US:

+1-855-452-5696 or +1-646-254-3697

International:

+61-2-8199-0299

Conference ID:

9490302

Additionally, a live and archived webcast of this conference call will be available at http://ir.bitauto.com.

[1] This announcement contains translations of certain amounts in Renminbi into U.S. dollars at specified rates solely for the convenience of the readers. Unless otherwise noted, all translations from Renminbi to U.S. dollars are made at a rate of RMB6.8755 to US$1.00, the effective noon buying rate as of December 31, 2018 in The City of New York for cable transfers of Renminbi as certified for customs purposes by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

SOURCE Bitauto Holdings Limited

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