Baidu Q1 2012 Profits Rise, But Revenue Outlook for Next Quarter Disappointing

Baidu, which runs China’s most popular search engine, has reported a rise in first quarter profits, although second quarter revenue expectations may not meet the level analysts have estimated.

Baidu reports a profit growth for Q1 2012, but revenue estimates for the next quarter are below expectations. (Photo: AP)

Baidu says its profits for first quarter 2012 rose 76% compared with Q1 2011 figures, and attributes this to a rise in consumer numbers. Likewise, revenue per customer has risen, contributing to the growth. The Beijing-based company’s net income for ¬†the first quarter rose to US$ 299 million, which translates to US$ 0.85 per share. The quarterly revenue was at US$ 677.1 million.

Revenue per customer has also risen 49%, as Baidu says the number of its active online marketing customers has risen by 17% to 321,000 during the quarter.

However, second quarter revenues may not be as good as expected. While analysts have earlier estimated 2Q 2012 revenues at US$ 869.6 million, Baidu is not so optimistic, with an expected revenue of US$ 847 to 867 million, reports AP.

Baidu’s profit for the previous quarter also rose approximately the same level — 77% in Q4 2011, relative to the same period in 2010. Baidu dominates the search business in China, with a 78.3% market share, compared with Google’s 16.7%. Other search engines in the region include¬†Tencent Soso, Sogou and other smaller competitors.