Snapchat added 8 million daily active users in the first quarter, including 3 million in the United States.

In its first quarter as a publicly traded company, Snap Inc. reported today that it generated 90 cents of revenue per user, on average. That’s up 181.2% from 32 cents a year earlier. 

Snapchat added 8 million daily active users during the quarter, including 3 million in the United States. It now has 166 million daily active users, up 36.1% from 122 million a year earlier. Snap more than doubled the number of net new users coming from Android devices compared to fourth quarter and Android users accounted for more than 30% of net new users during the quarter, up from 20% in the fourth quarter.

“We still have a lot of work to do, but we’re excited by the amount of progress we’ve made in such a short time,” said CEO Evan Spiegel during a conference call with analysts.

For the sake of comparison, Facebook Inc.’s Snapchat-like Instagram Stories feature, which let users and brands post photos and videos that disappear after 24 hours, has 200 million daily users even though the feature only launched last August.
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During the quarter, Snap rolled out a search tool, which it considers a critical tool to help users discover content on its platform, Spiegel said. “Search is exciting for us because it begins to expose the so-called long tail of content on our service,” he said. “With so many Snaps created every day, there really is a story for everything on Snapchat. Search surfaces interesting Stories created by machine learning and allows our community to find Stories for anything they might be interested in.” Moreover, helping foster content discovery, is a crucial ingredient in the platform increasing its ad impressions.

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Snap’s advertising business is still evolving. “We started our advertising business by servicing big brands,” said Imran Khan, Snap’s chief strategy officer. “This strategy proved invaluable. These partners have high standards and provided great feedback that shaped our priorities.”

Advertisers have increasingly called for ads and tools that appeal to the broad swath of potential advertisers, he said. “We want to make it easy and painless for both the largest brands and the smallest local businesses to advertise on Snapchat,” Khan said. “This includes how advertisers buy, create and manage their ads. We’re still in the early stages of building these tools and we’re making good progress.”

For example, Snap last week launched its first self-service product, called Snapchat Ad Manager. “Our goal is to put the power of our ad products into the hands of every advertiser, regardless of their size,” he said.

For the first quarter ended March 31, Snap reported:

  • $149.6 million in revenue, up 285.6% from $38.8 million a year earlier.
  • 166 million daily active users, up 36.1% from 122 million in the same period a year earlier.
  • $2.208 billion net loss compared with a $104.6 million loss in the year-ago period. That large loss was due, in large part, to $1.992 billion in stock-based compensation expenses.
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