(Bloomberg)—Blue Apron Holdings Inc.’s fourth-quarter revenue was $187.7 million, beating analyst estimates for $186.3 million. Although it is higher than analysts expected, it is still 13% lower than Q4 2016’s $215.9 million in revenue.
Despite this drop, Blue Apron’s sales are still encouraging. Revenue for full year 2017 increased 11% to $881.2 million from $795.4 million for full year 2016, driven primarily by an increase in orders, Blue Apron said in a press release.
The company had a dismal first year as a public company: growth disappeared, competitors rushed into the market and problems at one of the its meal-packing centers only made matters worse. CEO Brad Dickerson took over from the company’s co-founder in November, vowing to turn things around.
“We still have a lot of work to do,” Dickerson said, while telling analysts that the company had made serious progress on keeping food costs down and fixing the issues at its New Jersey packing center. This year, he plans to start increasing marketing spending again, which was $25.2 million in the fourth quarter of 2017, compared to $37.1 million in the fourth quarter of 2016. He also plans to expand the company’s product line so it becomes a “consumer lifestyle brand” instead of a narrowly focused meal-service company, Dickerson said.
In addition, Blue Apron’s shares jumped the most in two months. The shares jumped as much as 25%, the most since December 4. However, they’re still down 65% from their initial public offering.
Blue Apron’s net loss was 20 cents a share, the company said in a statement Tuesday, compared with the Wall Street consensus forecast for a loss of 27 cents. Net losses will contract by another 33% over 2018, Dickerson said on a conference call.
Blue Apron is bleeding customers. It had 746,00 users at the end of 2017, compared with 879,000 at the same time a year earlier.
Blue Apron is No. 197 in the Internet Retailer 2017 Top 500. Its competitors include HelloFresh SE, Amazon.com Inc. (No. 1) and even traditional grocery stores.