Verisign (NASDAQ: VRSN) reported earnings today after the close for Q4 2018 and full year results.
They reported revenue of $307 million for the fourth quarter of 2018, up 4.0 percent from the same quarter in 2017. Verisign reported net income of $182 million and diluted earnings per share (diluted “EPS”) of $1.50 for the fourth quarter of 2018, compared to net income of $103 million and diluted EPS of $0.83 for the same quarter in 2017. The operating margin was 63.1 percent for the fourth quarter of 2018 compared to 59.7 percent for the same quarter in 2017.
- Verisign ended 2018 with cash, cash equivalents, and marketable securities of $1.27 billion, a decrease of $1.15 billion from year-end 2017.
- Cash flow from operations was $219 million for the fourth quarter of 2018 and $698 million for the full year 2018 compared with $199 million for the same quarter in 2017 and $703 million for the full year 2017.
- Deferred revenues on Dec. 31, 2018, totaled $1.02 billion, an increase of $19 million from year-end 2017.
- During the fourth quarter, Verisign repurchased 1.2 million shares of its common stock for $175 million. During the full year 2018, Verisign repurchased 4.4 million shares of its common stock for $600 million.
- Effective Feb. 7, 2019 the Board of Directors approved an additional authorization for share repurchases of approximately $603 million of common stock, which brings the total amount to $1.0 billion authorized and available under Verisign’s share repurchase program, which has no expiration.
- On Oct. 26, 2018, Verisign and the U.S. Department of Commerce (“DOC”) entered into Amendment 35 to the Cooperative Agreement, which, among other items, permits Verisign, without further approval of the DOC, to agree with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (“ICANN”) to change the .com Registry Agreement to increase wholesale prices for .com domain names up to 7 percent in each of the last four years of each six-year period of the .com Registry Agreement.
- Verisign ended the fourth quarter with 153.0 million .com and .net domain name registrations in the domain name base, a 4.5 percent increase from the end of the fourth quarter of 2017, and a net increase of 1.29 million registrations during the fourth quarter of 2018.
- In the fourth quarter, Verisign processed 9.5 million new domain name registrations for .com and .net, as compared to 9.0 million for the same quarter in 2017.
- The final .com and .net renewal rate for the third quarter of 2018 was 74.8 percent compared with 74.4 percent for the same quarter in 2017. Renewal rates are not fully measurable until 45 days after the end of the quarter.