TransUnion (TRU - Free Report) reported better-than-expected first-quarter 2018 results.
Adjusted earnings of 57 cents surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 6 cents and improved 36% year over year. Lower tax rate, resulting from Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, significantly benefited the company’s earnings in the reported quarter.
Total revenues of $537 surpassed the consensus mark by 6.1% and were up 18% (17% on a constant-currency basis). The improvement was driven by strong double-digit growth in each of the operating segments — U.S. Information Services (USIS), International and Consumer Interactive — positive contribution from acquisitions of DataLink services, FactorTrust and eBureau as well as contribution from incremental credit monitoring business from a competitor.
Shares barely moved in the afterhours trading, following the earnings release. Over the past year, the stock has rallied a massive 67.6%, significantly outperforming the industry’s 15.9% gain.
Concurrent with the earnings announcement, TransUnion announced its agreement to buy Callcredit Information Group — the second largest and fast-growing consumer credit bureau in the U.K. This buyout should help the company boost its international expansion strategy and contribute significantly to its long-term top- and bottom-line growth.
We expect TransUnion to continue benefiting from a strong business model, diversified revenue streams, significant operating leverage, low capital requirements, and strong and stable cash flows.
Let’s delve deeper in to the numbers:
Revenues by Operating Segments
The U.S. Information Services revenues of $342 million were up 21% year over year driven by strong performance in all the three platforms within the segment. Online Data Services, Marketing Services and Decision Services revenues of $228 million, $52 million and $63 million were up 25%, 23% and 8% respectively, on a year-over-year basis.
International revenues surged 15% year over year to $96 million driven by strength in both developed and emerging markets. Within the segment, developed market revenues of $31 million increased 12% (8% on a constant-currency basis). Emerging market revenues of $65 million was up 17% (13% constant currency).
Revenues at the Consumer Interactive segment improved 12% from the prior-year quarter to $118 million, aided by strong growth in both direct and indirect channels.
TransUnion Revenue (TTM)
Adjusted EBITDA was $203 million, up 18% (17% on a constant-currency basis) year over year. Meanwhile, adjusted EBITDA margin remained flat at 37.7% mainly because of two reasons. First, roughly two-thirds of the incremental monitoring revenues from a competitor were used in advertising, marketing and litigation in the company’s international segment. Second, the company incurred significant cost related to three acquisitions namely DataLink services, FactorTrust and eBureau.
Total adjusted operating income was $173 million, up 17% from the year-ago quarter, primarily owing to top-line growth. Total adjusted operating margin contracted 30 basis points to 32.1% in the quarter.
Balance Sheet and Cash Flow
TransUnion had $154.3 million in cash and cash equivalents at the end of the first quarter compared with $115.8 million in the prior quarter. Long-term debt was $2,334.7 million compared with $2,345.3 million in the prior quarter. The company generated $101 million in cash from operating activities and spent 26.9 million on capex.
For the second quarter of 2018, TransUnion expects revenues between $534 million and $539 million, an improvement of 12-13% year over year on a constant-currency basis. The Zacks Consensus Estimate is pegged at $525.4 million. Adjusted EBITDA is envisioned to be in the range of $208-$211 million, an increase of 12-14%.
Adjusted earnings per share including a benefit of roughly 7 cents owing to Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, is expected between 59 and 60 cents, a rise of 26-29%. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings is pegged at 57 cents.
Zacks Rank & Upcoming Releases
TransUnion has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
Upcoming earnings releases in the broader Business Services sector are from key players like FTI Consulting (FCN - Free Report) , S&P Global (SPGI - Free Report) and Interpublic Group of Companies (IPG - Free Report) . While FTI Consulting and S&P Global are slated to report quarterly numbers on Apr 26, Interpublic Group of Companies will release its results on Apr 27.
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