NEW YORK, April 30, 2003
-- Bankrate, Inc. (RATE), the Internet's leading consumer banking marketplace,
today reported an increase in net income to a record $2.0 million, or
$0.13 per share on a diluted basis, for the quarter ended March 31, 2003,
from $690,000, or $0.05 per share on a diluted basis, excluding the non-cash
gain on early extinguishment of debt of $2.0 million in the quarter ended
March 31, 2002. (Net income for the quarter ended March 31, 2002 was $2.7
million or $0.19 per share on a diluted basis). These results reflect
Bankrate's sixth consecutive profitable quarter as a result of increased
advertiser demand and traffic patterns. Total revenue for the first quarter
rose 52% to a record $8.5 million from $5.6 million in the first quarter
Commenting on Bankrate's first quarter performance,
President and CEO Elisabeth DeMarse said, "We are very pleased with
across the board growth for what is traditionally our strongest quarter
of the year. Our results exceeded the exceptionally robust results in
the third and fourth quarters in 2002. In fact, our net income in the
first quarter was 24% above the previous all time record of $1.6 million,
or $0.11 per share on a diluted basis, in the third quarter last year.
These results reflect Bankrate's ability to generate strong top and bottom
line growth on a stable fixed expense base."
For the eighth consecutive quarter, the Company generated
cash from operations. Cash increased $1.8 million from $11.0 million at
December 31, 2002 to $12.8 million at March 31, 2003, and Bankrate remains
virtually debt-free. "Our strong balance sheet and cash flow represent
a solid base for future growth, enabling us to extend our product lines
either through internal expansion or by acquisition," explained Bob
DeFranco, Senior Vice President-Chief Financial Officer.
First Quarter Highlights
Bankrate continued to experience unprecedented strength
in revenue in all categories, resulting in higher year-over-year and consecutive
quarter revenue for the three-month period:
- Total revenue of $8.5 million was $2.9 million,
or 52% higher, than the first quarter a year earlier, and was $1.1 million,
or 14%, higher than the fourth quarter of 2002.
- Online publishing revenue of $7.3 million was up $2.6
million, or 56%, over the 2002 first quarter, and was $930,000, or 14%,
higher than the fourth quarter of 2002.
- Graphic ad revenue was up $1.7 million, or 80%, over
the first quarter of 2002, and was 12% higher than the fourth quarter
- Hyperlink (rate table listings) revenue increased $1.1
million, or 63%, over the same quarter of 2002, and was 12% higher than
the fourth quarter of 2002.
- Print publishing and licensing revenue of $1.2 million
was up $288,000, or 31%, over the 2002 first quarter and was 12% above
the $1.1 million reported in the fourth quarter of 2002.
- Excluding barter, other operating expenses as a percentage
of total revenue declined from 53% for the three months ended March
31, 2002 to 46% for the current quarter, while total expenses as a percentage
of total revenue dropped from 85% in the first quarter of 2002 to 75%
in the same quarter in 2003.
- Page views for the first quarter of 2003 of 107 million
were up 83% over the 58 million reported in the same quarter in 2002,
and were 27 million, or 35%, higher than page views in the fourth quarter
- On January 9, 2003 the Company's stock began trading
on the Nasdaq SmallCap Market under its existing stock symbol RATE.
Online publishing revenue for the three months ended March
31, 2003 and 2002 included barter revenue of $750,000 and $855,000, representing
9% and 15% of total revenue, respectively.
"Consumer demand for our objective rate information
and personal financial advice continued to build despite war jitters.
Our first two million page view day came on the heels of initiatives taken
in March. These initiatives include making Bankrate data available to
subscribers of The Wall Street Journal Online, the Associated Press Radio
Network's launch of Bankrate.com's `The Personal Finance Minute,' and
the release of our Financial Literacy benchmark survey conducted by RoperASW.
Working with leading partners has helped us to continue to build recognition
of the Bankrate brand as the gold standard for consumers seeking objective
data and education for their most important banking needs," Ms. DeMarse
April 30, 2003 Conference Call & Replay Information
The Company has scheduled a teleconference on its first
quarter results today at 2:00 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time (11 a.m. Pacific
Daylight Time). To participate in the teleconference please call 1-877-261-8992
10 minutes prior to the start time.
A replay of the teleconference will be available through
May 21 by calling 1-888-843-8996 (domestic) or 1-630-652-3044 (international)
and entering the pass code 7024773#.
About Bankrate, Inc.
Bankrate, Inc. (RATE) owns and operates Bankrate.com, the Internet's leading
consumer banking marketplace. Bankrate.com averages 4 million unique visitors
per month, according to comScore Media Metrix, which ranks Bankrate.com
first in unique visitors in the "Financial information and advice"
category. Bankrate.com reviews more than 4,800 financial institutions
in more than 180 markets in 50 states. Bankrate.com is a destination site
of personal finance channels, including banking, investing, taxes and
small business finance. It is the leading aggregator of more than 190
financial products, including mortgages, credit cards, new and used auto
loans, money market accounts and CDs, checking and ATM fees, home equity
loans and online banking fees. Bankrate.com provides financial applications
and information to a network of more than 80 partners, including Yahoo!
(YHOO), America Online (AOL), The Wall Street Journal (DJ) and The New
York Times (NYT). Bankrate.com's information is also distributed through
more than 100 national and state publications.
Certain matters discussed in this press release are or may
be considered to be "forward-looking statements" within the
meaning of the Securities Act of 1933 and the Securities Exchange Act
of 1934, as amended by the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of
1995. Those statements include statements regarding the intent, belief
or current expectations of the Company and members of our management team.
Such forward-looking statements include without limitation statements
made with respect to future revenue, revenue growth, market acceptance
of our products, and profitability. Investors and prospective investors
are cautioned that any such forward-looking statements are not guarantees
of future performance and involve risks and uncertainties, and that actual
results may differ materially from those contemplated by such forward-looking
statements. Important factors currently known to management that could
cause actual results to differ materially from those in forward-looking
statements include the following: we have a history of losses; we use
barter transactions that do not generate cash; our success depends on
Internet advertising revenue, interest rate volatility, establishing and
maintaining distribution arrangements, and increasing brand awareness
of our Web site; our markets are highly competitive; our Web site may
encounter technical problems and service interruptions; we rely on the
protection of our intellectual property; we may face liability for information
on our Web site; future government regulation of the Internet is uncertain
and subject to change; our ownership is heavily concentrated; our success
may depend on management and key employees; we may encounter difficulties
with future acquisitions; our results of operation may fluctuate significantly;
and our stock price may be volatile in the future. These and additional
important factors to be considered are set forth under "Item 1. Business
- Risk Factors," "Item 7. Management's Discussion and Analysis
of Financial Condition and Results of Operations" and in the other
sections of our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December
31, 2002, and in our other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
We undertake no obligation to update or revise forward-looking statements
to reflect changed assumptions, the occurrence of unanticipated events
or changes to future operating results or expectations.
SOURCE: Bankrate, Inc.
Bankrate, Inc., North Palm Beach, Fla.
Robert J. DeFranco, 561/630-1230