Twitter Might Have Actually Turned Profit in 2009

Not much of a profit, but a profit nonetheless

By Jackson West
|  Monday, Dec 21, 2009  |  Updated 5:30 PM PDT
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Twitter Might Have Actually Turned Profit in 2009

Scott Beale

Just as revenue in real American dollars might have started covering expenses, with over $100 million in new investment, Twitter has plenty of cash for a new office.

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Thanks to saving some money on text messaging costs and signing deals with Google and Microsoft to license data for search engines, Twitter might have actually made more money this year than it spent.

The San Francisco-based company made $25 million and spent between $20 and $25 million, according to anonymous sources cited by Bloomberg.

Twitter has raised nearly $115 million in venture capital in the last year, with analysts estimating the investments valuing the company anywhere from $500 million to over $1 billion.

So the $25 million in revenue is small potatoes, and a long way from the $114 million or more and growing in annual revenue predicted by 2013 in leaked company documents.

Of the company's costs, its popularity has allowed it to strike deals with cell-phone service providers to help cover the costs of all the text messages it generates, with employee compensation now likely the largest single line-item.

And the company, one of the few in San Francisco actually hiring, will probably have to spend more in order to grow, so don't expect profitability to become a habit.

Especially if Google is only paying $15 million and Microsoft $10 million for Twitter's data -- chump change, in GigaOm's opinion.

Photo by Scott Beale / Laughing Squid.

Jackson West would like to see a report that estimates all the money other people are making off Twitter while the company gropes for its own revenue-generating ideas.

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