FOSTER CITY, Calif., Sept. 2, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — QuinStreet, Inc. (Nasdaq: QNST), a leader in performance marketplace products and technologies, today announced that it has completed the sale of its Education media, client and campaign assets to EducationDynamics, a private company, for $20 million in cash. The sale closed on August 31, 2020.
“The sale of our Education assets is a big and important step in the narrowing of our footprint to our largest and most attractive opportunities,” commented Doug Valenti, CEO of QuinStreet. “With the divestiture of Education, we are now focused solely on Financial Services and Home Services. Revenue from those client verticals has grown at a 3-year CAGR of 32% for QuinStreet. We believe that the Financial Services and Home Services client verticals represent our biggest and most attractive long term business opportunities, capable of supporting strong double-digit revenue growth and margin expansion for many years to come.”
Outlook Following the Sale of Education Assets
QuinStreet reiterates its expectation to deliver $125–$130 million in revenue and mid-single digit adjusted EBITDA margin in fiscal Q1. The reiteration comes despite the divestiture of the Education client vertical and associated loss of revenue in the quarter, and reflects continued strong momentum in the Company’s Auto Insurance and Home Services client verticals.
QuinStreet, Inc. (Nasdaq: QNST) is a pioneer in delivering online marketplace solutions to match searchers with brands in digital media. QuinStreet is committed to providing consumers with the information and tools they need to research, find and select the products and brands that meet their needs.
Non-GAAP Financial Measures and Definitions of Client Verticals
This release and the accompanying tables include a discussion of adjusted EBITDA, adjusted net income, adjusted diluted net income per share and free cash flow and normalized free cash flow, all of which are non-GAAP financial measures that are provided as a complement to results provided in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America (“GAAP”). The term “adjusted EBITDA” refers to a financial measure that we define as net income less provision for (benefit from) income taxes, depreciation expense, amortization expense, stock-based compensation expense, interest and other expense, net, acquisition costs, gain on divestitures of businesses, net, strategic review costs, contingent consideration adjustment, litigation settlement expense, and restructuring costs disclosed in our Annual Report on Form 10-K. The term “adjusted net income” refers to a financial measure that we define as net income adjusted for amortization expense, stock-based compensation expense, acquisition costs, gain on divestitures of businesses, net, strategic review costs, contingent consideration adjustment, litigation settlement expense, and restructuring costs disclosed in our Annual Report on Form 10-K, and release of deferred tax valuation allowance, net of estimated taxes. The term “adjusted diluted net income per share” refers to a financial measure that we define as adjusted net income divided by weighted average diluted shares outstanding. The term “free cash flow” refers to a financial measure that we define as net cash provided by operating activities, less capital expenditures and internal software development costs. The term “normalized free cash flow” refers to free cash flow less changes in operating assets and liabilities. These non-GAAP measures should be considered in addition to results prepared in accordance with GAAP, but should not be considered a substitute for, or superior to, GAAP results. In addition, our definition of adjusted EBITDA, adjusted net income, adjusted diluted net income per share and free cash flow and normalized free cash flow may not be comparable to the definitions as reported by other companies.
We believe adjusted EBITDA, adjusted net income and adjusted diluted net income per share are relevant and useful information because they provide us and investors with additional measurements to analyze the Company’s operating performance.
Adjusted EBITDA is useful to us and investors because (i) we seek to manage our business to a level of adjusted EBITDA as a percentage of net revenue, (ii) it is used internally by us for planning purposes, including preparation of internal budgets; to allocate resources; to evaluate the effectiveness of operational strategies and capital expenditures as well as the capacity to service debt, (iii) it is a key basis upon which we assess our operating performance, (iv) it is one of the primary metrics investors use in evaluating Internet marketing companies, (v) it is a factor in determining compensation, (vi) it is an element of certain financial covenants under our historical borrowing arrangements, and (vii) it is a factor that assists investors in the analysis of ongoing operating trends. In addition, we believe adjusted EBITDA and similar measures are widely used by investors, securities analysts, ratings agencies and other interested parties in our industry as a measure of financial performance, debt-service capabilities and as a metric for analyzing company valuations.
We use adjusted EBITDA as a key performance measure because we believe it facilitates operating performance comparisons from period to period by excluding potential differences caused by variations in capital structures (affecting interest expense), tax positions (such as the impact of changes in effective tax rates or fluctuations in permanent differences or discrete quarterly items), non-recurring charges, certain other items that we do not believe are indicative of core operating activities (such as litigation settlement expense, acquisition costs, gain or loss on divestitures of businesses, contingent consideration adjustment, strategic review costs, restructuring costs and other income and expense) and the non-cash impact of depreciation expense, amortization expense and stock-based compensation expense.
With respect to our Adjusted EBITDA guidance, the Company is not able to provide a quantitative reconciliation without unreasonable efforts to the most directly comparable GAAP financial measure due to the high variability, complexity and low visibility with respect to certain items such as taxes, and income and expense from changes in fair value of contingent consideration from acquisitions. We expect the variability of these items to have a potentially unpredictable and potentially significant impact on future GAAP financial results, and, as such, we also believe that any reconciliations provided would imply a degree of precision that would be confusing or misleading to investors.
Adjusted net income and adjusted diluted net income per share are useful to us and investors because they present an additional measurement of our financial performance, taking into account depreciation, which we believe is an ongoing cost of doing business, but excluding the impact of certain non-cash expenses (stock-based compensation, amortization of intangible assets, contingent consideration adjustment and release of deferred tax valuation allowance), non-recurring charges and certain other items that we do not believe are indicative of core operating activities. We believe that analysts and investors use adjusted net income and adjusted diluted net income per share as supplemental measures to evaluate the overall operating performance of companies in our industry.
Free cash flow is useful to investors and us because it represents the cash that our business generates from operations, before taking into account cash movements that are non-operational, and is a metric commonly used in our industry to understand the underlying cash generating capacity of a company’s financial model. Normalized free cash flow is useful as it removes the fluctuations in operating assets and liabilities that occur in any given quarter due to the timing of payments and cash receipts and therefore helps investors understand the underlying cash flow of the business as a quarterly metric and the cash flow generation potential of the business model. We believe that analysts and investors use free cash flow multiples as a metric for analyzing company valuations in our industry.
We intend to provide these non-GAAP financial measures as part of our future earnings discussions and, therefore, the inclusion of these non-GAAP financial measures will provide consistency in our financial reporting. A reconciliation of these non-GAAP measures to GAAP is provided in the accompanying tables.
FY2020 results in our Education Client Vertical include revenue from US, (historically) Brazil, and India. Revenue in our Financial Services Client Vertical includes Auto Insurance (auto, home, motorcycle, and small business), Life Insurance, Health Insurance, Personal Loans, Credit Cards, Banking, and (historically) Mortgage. Revenue in our Other Client Vertical includes Home Services and (historically) B2B. In fiscal Q3 2020, we divested our B2B client vertical and Brazil operations. In fiscal Q4 2020, we divested our Mortgage business.
Legal Notice Regarding Forward Looking Statements
This press release and its attachments contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 that involve risks and uncertainties. Words such as “estimate”, “will”, “believe”, “expect”, “intend”, “outlook”, “potential”, “promises” and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements include the statements in quotations from management in this press release, as well as any statements regarding the Company’s anticipated financial results, growth and strategic and operational plans. The Company’s actual results may differ materially from those anticipated in these forward-looking statements. Factors that may contribute to such differences include, but are not limited to: the impact from risks and uncertainties relating to the COVID-19 pandemic; the impact of changes in industry standards and government regulation including, but not limited to investigation or enforcement activities of the Department of Education, the Federal Trade Commission and other regulatory agencies; the Company’s ability to maintain and increase client marketing spend; the Company’s ability to maintain and increase the number of visitors to its websites and to convert those visitors and those to its third-party publishers’ websites into client prospects in a cost-effective manner; the impact of the current economic climate on the Company’s business; the Company’s ability to access and monetize Internet users on mobile devices; the Company’s ability to attract and retain qualified executives and employees; the Company’s ability to compete effectively against others in the online marketing and media industry both for client budget and access to third-party media; the Company’s ability to identify and manage acquisitions; and the impact and costs of any alleged failure by the Company to comply with government regulations and industry standards. More information about potential factors that could affect the Company’s business and financial results are contained in the Company’s annual report on Form 10-K and quarterly reports on Form 10-Q as filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”). Additional information will also be set forth in the Company’s annual report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2020, which will be filed with the SEC. The Company does not intend and undertakes no duty to release publicly any updates or revisions to any forward-looking statements contained herein.
SOURCE QuinStreet, Inc.