Finance

Freshworks sinks 13% after software maker forecasts lower annual revenue than expected in first quarterly report since IPO

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In this photo illustration a Freshworks Inc logo is seen on a smartphone screen.
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Shares of customer service and support software maker Freshworks fell more than 15% in extended trading on Tuesday after releasing quarterly results for the first time following its initial public offering.

Here’s how the company did:

  • Earnings: Loss of 4 cents per share, adjusted, vs. loss of 10 cents per share as expected by analysts, according to Refinitiv.
  • Revenue: $96.6 million, vs. $90.8 million as expected by analysts, according to Refinitiv.

Revenue grew almost 46% in the quarter, Freshworks said in a statement.

The company said it sees an adjusted loss of 22 cents to 20 cents per share, less than the 23 cents per share that had been expected by analysts polled by Refinitiv. But for revenue, the company’s projection of $364.5 million to $366.5 million came in just below the Refinitiv consensus of $366.5 million at the middle of the range. That would reflect less than 37% quarterly revenue growth.

That might be fine for some companies, but Freshworks’ stock has risen quickly since it priced shares at $36 in September. Before the after-hours move, the stock had risen 39% since its debut. In the past year, investors have rushed to buy high-growth cloud stocks, with the WisdomTree Cloud Computing Fund rising 50%, while the S&P 500 index is up less than 40% over the same period.

Google invested in Freshworks multiple times as it continued to face competition from the likes of Oracle, Salesforce, SAP and Zendesk.

Some employees will be able to sell shares of company stock for the first time on Thursday, Tyler Sloat, Freshworks’ finance chief, said on a conference call with analysts.

Freshworks can increase the amount of revenue it derives from a given customer when the customer adds agents to handle inquiries, and when it signs up for additional products. For example, the company has a human-resources software offering called Freshteam, which CEO Girish Mathrubootham said is an incubation phase. Over the longer term, executives believe the business can have a net dollar retention rate, representing growth from existing customers, of 110%, Sloat said. The rate was 117% in the third quarter, down from 118% in the second quarter.

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