News Release

Glu Reports Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2018 Financial Results

February 4, 2019 at 4:05 PM EST
  • Fourth quarter revenue up 19% year over year to $95.6 million; full year 2018 revenue up 28% to $366.6 million
  • Fourth quarter bookings grow 18% year over year to $98.2 million; full year 2018 bookings reach record $384.6 million, up 20% year over year
  • Company raises 2019 full year bookings guidance to a range of $435.0 million to $445.0 million, including partial year contributions from titles in beta: Diner DASH Town and WWE: Universe
  • Disney/Pixar title entering beta late Q1; no contribution currently included in updated 2019 guidance
  • Announces next generation version of our successful Deer Hunter franchise

SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Feb. 4, 2019-- Glu Mobile Inc. (NASDAQ: GLUU), a leading global developer and publisher of free-to-play mobile games, today announced financial results for its fourth quarter and full year ended December 31, 2018. The company also provided an outlook for its financial performance in the first quarter and increased its financial guidance for the full year 2019.

This press release features multimedia. View the full release here: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20190204005750/en/

(Photo: Business Wire)

(Photo: Business Wire)

Nick Earl, Chief Executive Officer, stated, “Our strong fourth quarter performance capped off a great year for Glu and our shareholders. Bookings for the full year grew 20% on the strength of our core business driven by the successful execution of our Growth Games strategy. The top line growth we delivered drove increased profitability on an adjusted EBITDA basis each quarter throughout 2018 on a year over year basis, reflecting the scale in our operating model.

Mr. Earl added, “We enter 2019 with a profitable and expanding core business and a strong pipeline of original IP games that we plan to launch this year and beyond. We are excited to announce that one of the games in development is the next generation of our highly successful Deer Hunter franchise. This new game will combine a proven game mechanic with a deeper meta layer that we expect our fans will love. We believe we are well positioned to build on the strong momentum from 2018 into this year and beyond.”

Fourth Quarter 2018 Financial Highlights:

 
 
Three Months Ended
in millions, except per share data December 31, 2018   December 31, 2017
 
Revenue $95.6 $80.2
Gross margin 63.3% 29.5%
Net loss ($1.3) ($39.6)
Net loss per share – basic and diluted ($0.01) ($0.29)
Weighted-average common shares outstanding – basic and diluted 143.5 137.7
Cash generated from operations excluding royalty advances $19.2 $8.5
Cash paid for royalty advances that are included in cash generated from operations ($0.4) ($3.4)
Cash and cash equivalents $97.8 $63.8
Additional Financial Information                    
Three Months Ended

Guidance provided for three months ended
December 31, 2018

December 31, 2018   December 31, 2017 Low   High
Bookings $98.2   $83.2 $94.3   $96.3
Platform commissions, excluding any impact of deferred platform commissions * $25.5 $21.5 $24.8 $25.2
Royalties, excluding any impact of deferred royalties* $6.9 $31.7 $5.8 $6.0
Hosting costs $1.6 $2.3 $1.7 $1.8
User acquisition and marketing expenses $23.4 $21.8 $22.5 $22.6
Adjusted other operating expenses* $29.8 $29.7 $31.0 $31.2
Depreciation $1.0 $0.8 $1.0 $1.0

* Platform commissions, excluding any impact of deferred platform commissions, Royalties, excluding any impact of deferred royalties, and Adjusted other operating expenses are non-GAAP financial measures. These non-GAAP financial items should be considered in addition to, but not as a substitute for, the information provided in accordance with GAAP. Reconciliations for these non-GAAP financial items to the most directly comparable financial items based on GAAP are provided in GAAP to Adjusted results reconciliation table.

Full Year 2018 Financial Highlights:

 
 
Twelve Months Ended
in millions, except per share data December 31, 2018   December 31, 2017
 
Revenue $366.6 $286.8
Gross margin 62.3% 50.8%
Net loss ($13.2) ($97.6)
Net loss per share – basic and diluted ($0.09) ($0.72)
Weighted-average common shares outstanding – basic and diluted 141.4 135.7
Cash generated from operations excluding royalty advances $37.9 ($3.7)
Cash paid for royalty advances that are included in cash generated from operations ($5.7) ($24.4)
Cash and cash equivalents $97.8 $63.8
         

Additional Financial Information

Twelve Months Ended
December 31, 2018   December 31, 2017
Bookings $384.6   $320.4
Platform commissions, excluding any impact of deferred platform commissions * $100.8 $82.7
Royalties, excluding any impact of deferred royalties* $26.9 $49.8
Hosting costs $6.7 $7.6
User acquisition and marketing expenses $95.1 $88.8
Adjusted other operating expenses* $117.3 $123.0
Depreciation $3.9 $3.2

* Platform commissions, excluding any impact of deferred platform commissions, Royalties, excluding any impact of deferred royalties, and Adjusted other operating expenses are non-GAAP financial measures. These non-GAAP financial items should be considered in addition to, but not as a substitute for, the information provided in accordance with GAAP. Reconciliations for these non-GAAP financial items to the most directly comparable financial items based on GAAP are provided in GAAP to Adjusted results reconciliation table.

Eric R. Ludwig, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer, said, “Fourth quarter bookings growth of 18% on a year over year basis was better than expected driven by continued strong performance from our Growth Games. Our strong top line performance enabled us to generate $28.9 million of free cash flow for the full year 2018. The execution of our Growth Games strategy in 2018 allowed us to deliver stackable bookings and strong adjusted EBITDA profitability. We have revised our annual guidance for 2019 upward to reflect the anticipated bookings contributions from the two games that are currently in beta and excludes contribution from our Disney/Pixar title that will enter beta in late Q1.”

Financial Outlook as of February 4, 2019:

Glu is providing its financial outlook for the first quarter of 2019 and updating guidance for the full year 2019 as follows:

First Quarter 2019 Guidance:

       
 
in millions Low   High
Bookings $88.0 $90.0
Platform commissions, excluding any impact of deferred platform commissions $23.1 $23.6
Royalties, excluding any impact of deferred royalties $4.4 $4.5
Hosting costs $1.5 $1.5
User acquisition and marketing expenses $21.4 $21.7
Adjusted other operating expenses $31.6 $31.7
Depreciation $1.0 $1.0
 
Supplemental information:
Income tax $0.2 $0.2
Stock-based compensation $6.9 $6.9
Amortization of intangible assets $1.3 $1.3
Weighted-average common shares outstanding – basic 145.4 145.4
Weighted-average common shares outstanding – diluted 159.0 159.0
 
Full Year 2019 Guidance    
 
in millions Low   High
Bookings $435.0 $445.0
Platform commissions, excluding any impact of deferred platform commissions $113.0 $116.0
Royalties, excluding any impact of deferred royalties $27.0 $28.0
Hosting costs $6.5 $7.0
User acquisition and marketing expenses $102.0 $103.0
Adjusted other operating expenses $137.5 $138.0
Depreciation $4.0 $4.0
 
Supplemental information:
Income tax $0.4 $0.4
Stock-based compensation $27.7 $27.7
Amortization of intangible assets 4.4 4.4
Weighted-average common shares outstanding – basic 148.5 148.5
Weighted-average common shares outstanding – diluted 162.6 162.6
Cash and cash equivalent balance At least $150.0M

Glu does not provide guidance on a GAAP basis primarily due to the fact that Glu is unable to predict, with reasonable accuracy, future changes in its deferred revenue and corresponding cost of revenue. The amount of Glu’s deferred revenue and cost of revenue for any given period is difficult to predict due to differing estimated useful lives of paying users across games, variability of monthly revenue, platform commissions and royalties by game and unpredictability of revenue from new game releases. Future changes in deferred revenue and deferred cost of revenue are uncertain and could be material to Glu’s results computed in accordance with GAAP. Accordingly, Glu is unable to provide a reconciliation of the non-GAAP financial measure guidance to the corresponding GAAP measure without unreasonable effort.

Quarterly Conference Call Information:

Glu will discuss its quarterly results via teleconference today at 2:00 p.m. Pacific Time (5:00 p.m. Eastern Time). Please dial (866) 582-8907 (domestic), or (760) 298-5046 (international), with conference ID # 6480013 to access the conference call at least five minutes prior to the 2:00 p.m. Pacific Time start time. A live webcast and replay of the call will also be available on the investor relations portion of the company's website at www.glu.com/investors. An audio replay will be available between 5:00 p.m. Pacific Time, February 4, 2019, and 8:59 p.m. Pacific Time, February 11, 2019, by calling (855) 859-2056, or (404) 537-3406, with conference ID # 6480013.

Disclosure Using Social Media Channels

Glu currently announces material information to its investors using SEC filings, press releases, public conference calls and webcasts. Glu uses these channels as well as social media channels to announce information about the company, games, employees and other issues. Given SEC guidance regarding the use of social media channels to announce material information to investors, Glu is notifying investors, the media, its players and others interested in the company that in the future, it might choose to communicate material information via social media channels or, it is possible that information it discloses through social media channels may be deemed to be material. Therefore, Glu encourages investors, the media, players and others interested in Glu to review the information posted on the company forum (http://ggnbb.glu.com/forum.php) and the company Facebook site (https://www.facebook.com/glumobile) and the company twitter account (https://twitter.com/glumobile). Investors, the media, players or other interested parties can subscribe to the company blog and twitter feed at the addresses listed above. Any updates to the list of social media channels Glu will use to announce material information will be posted on the Investor Relations page of the company's website at www.glu.com/investors.

Use of Non-GAAP Financial Measures

To supplement Glu's unaudited condensed consolidated financial data presented in accordance with GAAP, Glu uses certain non-GAAP measures of financial performance. The presentation of these non-GAAP financial measures is not intended to be considered in isolation from, as a substitute for, or superior to, the financial information prepared and presented in accordance with GAAP, and may be different from non-GAAP financial measures used by other companies. In addition, these non-GAAP measures have limitations in that they do not reflect all of the amounts associated with Glu's results of operations as determined in accordance with GAAP. The non-GAAP financial measures used by Glu include historical and estimated bookings, platform commissions, excluding any impact of deferred platform commissions, royalties, excluding any impact of deferred royalties, and adjusted operating expenses. These non-GAAP financial measures exclude the following items from Glu's unaudited consolidated statements of operations:

  • Change in deferred platform commissions;
  • Change in deferred royalties;
  • Non-cash warrant benefit/(expense)
  • Impairment and amortization of intangible assets;
  • Stock-based compensation expense;
  • Restructuring charges;
  • Transitional costs; and
  • Litigation costs.

Bookings do not reflect the deferral of certain game revenue that Glu recognizes over the estimated useful lives of paying users of Glu’s games and excludes changes in deferred revenue.

Glu may consider whether significant items that arise in the future should also be excluded in calculating the non-GAAP financial measures it uses.

Glu believes that these non-GAAP financial measures, when taken together with the corresponding GAAP financial measures, provide meaningful supplemental information regarding Glu's performance by excluding certain items that may not be indicative of Glu's core business, operating results or future outlook. Glu's management uses, and believes that investors benefit from referring to, these non-GAAP financial measures in assessing Glu's operating results, as well as when planning, forecasting and analyzing future periods. These non-GAAP financial measures also facilitate comparisons of Glu's performance to prior periods.

Cautions Regarding Forward-Looking Statements

This news release contains forward-looking statements, including those regarding our “Financial Outlook as of February 4, 2019” (“First Quarter 2019 Guidance” and “Full Year 2019 Guidance”), and the statements that we expect our Disney/Pixar title to enter beta by late Q1; we have a strong pipeline of original IP games that we plan to launch this year and beyond; we plan to release a next generation version of our Deer Hunter franchise; and that we believe we are well positioned to build on the strong momentum from 2018 into this year and beyond. These forward-looking statements are subject to material risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements. Investors should consider important risk factors, which include: the risk that consumer demand for smartphones, tablets and next-generation platforms does not grow as significantly as we anticipate or that we will be unable to capitalize on any such growth; the risk that we do not realize a sufficient return on our investment with respect to our efforts to develop free-to-play games for smartphones, tablets and next-generation platforms, the risk that we will be unable build successful Growth Games that provide predictable bookings and year over year growth; the risk that we will not be able to maintain our good relationships with Apple and Google; the risk that our development expenses for games for smartphones, tablets and next-generation platforms are greater than we anticipate; the risk that our recently and newly launched games are less popular than anticipated or decline in popularity and monetization rate more quickly than we anticipate; the risk that our newly released games will be of a quality less than desired by reviewers and consumers; the risk that the mobile games market, particularly with respect to free-to-play gaming, is smaller than anticipated; the risk that we may lose a key intellectual property license; the risk that we are unable to recruit and retain qualified personnel for developing and maintaining the games in our product pipeline resulting in reduced monetization of a game, product launch delays or games being eliminated from our pipeline altogether; and other risks detailed under the caption "Risk Factors" in our Form 10-Q filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on November 8, 2018 and our other SEC filings. You can locate these reports through our website at http://www.glu.com/investors. We are under no obligation, and expressly disclaim any obligation, to update or alter our forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

About Glu Mobile

Glu Mobile (NASDAQ: GLUU) is a leading creator of mobile games. Founded in 2001, Glu is headquartered in San Francisco with additional locations in San Mateo, Toronto and Hyderabad. With a history spanning over a decade, Glu’s culture is rooted in taking smart risks and fostering creativity to deliver world-class interactive experiences for our players. Glu’s diverse portfolio features top-grossing and award-winning original and licensed IP titles including, Cooking DASH, Covet Fashion, Deer Hunter, Design Home, MLB Tap Sports Baseball and Kim Kardashian: Hollywood available worldwide on various platforms including the App Store and Google Play. For more information, visit www.glu.com or follow Glu on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

COOKING DASH, COVET FASHION, DEER HUNTER, DESIGN HOME, TAP SPORTS, GLU, GLU MOBILE, and the 'g' character logo are trademarks of Glu Mobile Inc.

Glu Mobile Inc.        
Condensed Consolidated Statements of Operations
(in thousands, except per share data)
(unaudited)
Three Months Ended Twelve Months Ended
December December December December
2018 2017 2018 2017
 
Revenue $ 95,640 $ 80,212 $ 366,561 $ 286,827
 
Cost of revenue:
Platform commissions, royalties and other 32,508 28,980 128,445 103,499
Impairment of prepaid royalties and minimum guarantees 612 26,067 711 27,323
Impairment and amortization of intangible assets   2,017     1,535     9,119     10,331  
Total cost of revenue   35,137     56,582     138,275     141,153  
Gross profit   60,503     23,630     228,286     145,674  
 
Operating expenses:
Research and development 25,553 21,395 94,934 92,420
Sales and marketing 28,435 26,341 113,860 104,356
General and administrative 8,074 8,552 31,667 34,425
Restructuring charge   -     (21 )   240     6,019  
Total operating expenses   62,062     56,267     240,701     237,220  
 
Loss from operations (1,559 ) (32,637 ) (12,415 ) (91,546 )
 
Interest and other income / (expense), net 286 (6,510 ) (235 ) (6,850 )
 
Loss before income taxes (1,273 ) (39,147 ) (12,650 ) (98,396 )
Income tax benefit/(provision)   (49 )   (420 )   (549 )   826  
Net loss $ (1,322 ) $ (39,567 ) $ (13,199 ) $ (97,570 )
 
Net loss per common share - basic and diluted $ (0.01 ) $ (0.29 ) $ (0.09 ) $ (0.72 )
 
Weighted average common shares outstanding - basic and diluted 143,527 137,697 141,402 135,715
 

Glu Mobile Inc.    
Consolidated Balance Sheets
(in thousands)
(unaudited)
December 31 December 31,
2018 2017
 
ASSETS
Cash and cash equivalents $ 97,834 $ 63,764
Accounts receivable, net 27,325 34,673
Prepaid royalties 8,520 2,994
Deferred royalties 4,410 4,364
Deferred platform commission fees 25,862 20,446
Restricted Cash 110 602
Prepaid expenses and other current assets   6,940     10,733  
Total current assets 171,001 137,576
 
Property and equipment, net 13,888 14,630
Long-term prepaid royalties 1,667 9,302
Other long-term assets 2,505 3,299
Intangible assets, net 9,145 18,264
Goodwill   116,227     116,227  
Total assets $ 314,433   $ 299,298  
 
LIABILITIES AND STOCKHOLDERS' EQUITY
Accounts payable $ 10,480 $ 21,203
Accrued liabilities 1,384 1,154
Accrued compensation 17,896 20,603
Accrued royalties 14,139 11,782
Accrued restructuring 294 759
Deferred revenue   85,736     77,403  
Total current liabilities 129,929 132,904
Long-term accrued royalties 1,649 7,300
Other long-term liabilities   5,542     5,234  
Total liabilities   137,120     145,438  
 
Common stock 14 14
Additional paid-in capital 617,781 589,962
Accumulated other comprehensive income (loss) 1 (6 )
Accumulated deficit   (440,483 )   (436,110 )
Total stockholders' equity   177,313     153,860  
Total liabilities and stockholders' equity $ 314,433   $ 299,298  
 

Glu Mobile Inc.            
GAAP to Adjusted Results Reconciliation
(in thousands)
(unaudited)

Three Months Ended

September 30, December 31, March 31, June 30, September 30, December 31,
2017 2017 2018 2018 2018 2018
GAAP platform commissions $ 21,063 $ 20,787 $ 21,729 $ 23,250 $ 25,650 $ 24,756
Change in deferred platform commissions   1,107     707     1,477     2,768       413       760  
Platform Commissions, excluding any impact of deferred platform commissions $ 22,170   $ 21,494   $ 23,206   $ 26,018     $ 26,063     $ 25,516  
 
GAAP royalties (including impairment of royalties and minimum guarantees) $ 6,473 $ 31,311 $ 5,506 $ 6,631 $ 7,141 $ 6,784
Change in deferred royalties   (153 )   355     15     767       (70 )     122  
Royalties, excluding any impact of deferred royalties $ 6,320   $ 31,666   $ 5,521   $ 7,398     $ 7,071     $ 6,906  
 
GAAP other operating expenses (GAAP operating expenses excluding user acquisition and marketing expenses) $ 36,138 $ 34,516 $ 35,263 $ 34,929 $ 36,797 $ 38,695
Stock-based compensation (3,575 ) (4,424 ) (6,308 ) (5,343 ) (5,879 ) (7,062 )
Transitional costs (506 ) (336 ) (919 ) (13 ) - (598 )
Restructuring charge (1,402 ) 21 (80 ) - (160 ) -
Litigation Costs   -     -     -     -       (717 )     (1,217 )
Adjusted other operating expenses $ 30,655   $ 29,777   $ 27,956   $ 29,573     $ 30,041     $ 29,818  
 

In addition to the reasons stated above, which are generally applicable to each of the items Glu excludes from its non-GAAP financial measures, Glu believes it is appropriate to exclude certain items for the following reasons:

Change in Deferred Platform Commissions and Deferred Royalties. At the date we sell certain premium games and micro-transactions, Glu has an obligation to provide additional services and incremental unspecified digital content in the future without an additional fee. In these cases, we recognize any associated cost of revenue, including platform commissions and royalties, on a straight-line basis over the estimated life of the paying user. Internally, Glu’s management excludes the impact of the changes in deferred platform commissions and deferred royalties related to its premium and free-to-play games in its non-GAAP financial measures when evaluating the company’s operating performance, when planning, forecasting and analyzing future periods, and when assessing the performance of its management team. Glu believes that excluding the impact of the changes in deferred platform commissions and deferred royalties from its operating results is important to facilitate comparisons to prior periods and to understand Glu’s operations.

Non-cash Warrant (benefit)/expense. Glu recorded non-cash charges related to the warrants to purchase shares of common stock issued to certain brand holders as part of third party licensing, development and publishing arrangements. These charges were recorded in cost of revenue. When evaluating the performance of its consolidated results, Glu does not consider non-cash warrant charges as it places a greater emphasis on overall stockholder dilution rather than the accounting charges associated with any warrants. As the non-cash warrant expense impacts comparability from period to period Glu believes that investors benefit from a supplemental non-GAAP financial measure that excludes these charges.

Impairment and amortization of Intangible Assets. When analyzing the operating performance of an acquired entity or intangible asset, Glu's management focuses on the total return provided by the investment (i.e., operating profit generated from the acquired entity as compared to the purchase price paid) without taking into consideration any allocations made for accounting purposes. Because the purchase price for an acquisition necessarily reflects the accounting value assigned to intangible assets (including acquired in-process technology and goodwill), when analyzing the operating performance of an acquisition in subsequent periods, Glu's management excludes the GAAP impact of acquired intangible assets to its financial results. Glu believes that such an approach is useful in understanding the long-term return provided by an acquisition and that investors benefit from a supplemental non-GAAP financial measure that excludes the accounting expense associated with acquired intangible assets.

Stock-Based Compensation Expense. Glu applies the fair value provisions of Accounting Standard Codification Topic 718, Compensation-Stock Compensation (“ASC 718”). ASC 718 requires the recognition of compensation expense, using a fair-value based method, for costs related to all share-based payments. Glu's management team excludes stock-based compensation expense from its short and long-term operating plans. In contrast, Glu's management team is held accountable for cash-based compensation and such amounts are included in its operating plans. Further, when considering the impact of equity award grants, Glu places a greater emphasis on overall stockholder dilution rather than the accounting charges associated with such grants. Glu believes it is useful to provide a non-GAAP financial measure that excludes stock-based compensation in order to better understand the long-term performance of its business.

Restructuring Charges. Glu undertook restructuring activities in the first, second and third quarters of 2017 and recorded cash restructuring charges due to the termination of certain employees in Asia and certain U.S. offices. Glu recorded the severance costs as an operating expense when it communicated the benefit arrangement to the employee and no significant future services, other than a minimum retention period, were required of the employee to earn the termination benefits. Additionally, Glu recorded restructuring charges upon exiting portions of certain facilities in Asia and the U.S. in 2017 and the first quarter of 2018. Glu believes that these restructuring charges do not reflect its ongoing operations and that investors benefit from a supplemental non-GAAP financial measure that excludes these charges.

Transitional Costs. GAAP requires expenses to be recognized for various types of events associated with a business acquisition such as legal, accounting and other deal related expenses. Glu incurred various costs related to the divestiture of its Moscow studio, termination of certain game related contracts and the acquisition and integration of Crowdstar and Dairy Free Games into Glu’s operations. Glu recorded these acquisition and transitional costs as operating expenses when they were incurred. Glu believes that these acquisition and transitional costs affect comparability from period to period and that investors benefit from a supplemental non-GAAP financial measure that excludes these expenses.

Litigation costs. Glu incurred legal costs related to the complaint filed by the former Chief Executive Officer of Crowdstar in the Superior Court of the State of California for the County of Santa Clara against Glu, Time Warner Inc., Intel Capital Corporation, Middlefield Ventures Inc., Rachel Lam, Jose Blanc and additional yet-to-be-named defendants. Glu believes that these legal costs have no direct correlation to the operation of its ongoing core business and affect comparability from period to period and, as a result, that investors benefit from a supplemental non-GAAP financial measure that excludes these expenses.

Source: Glu Mobile Inc.

Investor Relations:
Bob Jones / Taylor Krafchik
Ellipsis
IR@glu.com
646-776-0886