Belfast Telegraph

Twitter announces £1m a week revenues

By Gideon Spanier

Twitter is now making more than  £1m a week in revenues in Britain as its growth accelerates in its biggest market outside America, its annual report revealed today.

The social media company’s UK revenues jumped to $23.5m (£14.1m) in the three months to December — more than half as much as it made in the previous nine months, when it generated $43m.


Twitter’s annual turnover from Britain was $66.5 million — barely two years after the US company opened an office in London’s West End in 2011.


The fast-growing British operation passed a significant milestone in the second half of 2013 when it began generating 10 per cent of its worldwide sales — chiefly from advertising.


In a further sign of Britain’s importance, it generates almost 40 per cent of all Twitter’s revenues outside America.


The social media site has over 15 million users in Britain.


Twitter does not disclose UK employee numbers but it employed 2700 worldwide as of December 31 and many are set to become millionaires thanks to the company’s long-term share awards.


The annual report said that employees were “granted” 58.7 million shares, known as restricted stock units (RSUs), last year.


The RSUs are theoretically worth $3.23 billion or an average of $1.2 million per person, based on today’s price of $54 a share.


Most of the awards vest over the next four years and depend in part on future performance. The share price remains at more than twice the level of its November stock market debut when it was $26.


Twitter’s valuation fell sharply last month over fears that the social media site is seeing slowing growth in new users — particularly in America — and a fall in the number of timeline views, the number of times a user checks their feed. Twitter still generates almost three quarters of its $665 million in sales in the US.


The eight-year-old company has a $30 billion stock market value, despite never making a profit as it focuses on expansion.


It is dwarfed by the social media giant Facebook — with an estimated £300 million a year in UK sales last year, according to eMarketer — and the search behemoth Google with around £3.5 billion in British turnover.


But Twitter set new records at last Sunday’s Oscars when host Ellen DeGeneres’ "selfie" photograph with fellow celebrities was retweeted 3.3 million times. There were also 4 million tweets at last month’s Brit Awards in London — double the level a year earlier.


Twitter declined to comment.

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