TWLO Earnings

$82M in revenues.
Looking at my notes, I was estimating $81.5M in sales. This was based on beating their forecast by the same percentage as they beat in Q3. This also kept them on the 60% growth path as well.

Forecast for Q1 is $83M representing 40% growth.
They will need to do closer to $94M to stay on pace with growth. $94M/$83M is about a 13% beat which is in line with their “beats” the past two quarters.

Full year guidance assumes 32% growth. I think the stock would get hammered if they started tracking to growth levels roughly half of where we stand today.

Stock has bounced from down 7% to up 2% in the after market.



Here are some further tidbits and thoughts from the conference call.

Base revenue continues to outpace overall growth meaning that variable revenue is becoming a smaller part of the pie. This is good news as Base revenue is customers that sign a 12 month agreement to minimum usage. The dollar based net expansion rate of 155% tells us that customers who signed up 12 months ago are using TWLO more today.

The company announced some key wins. One is a large airline, the other is All Web Leads (insurance industry) and the other is a large service provider to the US automobile market - servicing 10s of millions of auto clients. The latter two are utilizing TWLO for their call centers, apparently an incredibly important part of the businesses. The airline win was attributed to the company’s Enterprise Plan put in place recently whereby they are looking to penetrate larger organizations. A prior enterprise win was ING Bank.

TWLO rolled out new products in the quarter. If they meant anything to me, I’d list them.

The products they are focused on rolling out in 2017 are related to Programmable chat, voice and video though don’t let the fact that I listed those throw you off into thinking I know something about them.

Listening to the end of CEO Lawson’s prepared comments was interesting. When the conference call notes become available, I’ll post that section.

Top 10 Customers - 29%
Biggest Organization - 17% (don’t know what this means)
Whats App - 6%

Throughout the call management made it painfully clear they are looking to expand revenues and customers. They were almost apologetic for achieving 59% margins in the quarter stating not to expect that near term again. They even mentioned the elections causing seasonal traffic that increased revenue by a whopping $1M. They reiterated a goal to breakeven beginning in Q4 this year.

However, management does explain their path to profitability. It entails increasing the customer base for its low level building blocks for communications then creating more high level “use case” API. They are already doing this today with higher level API such as Notify. Higher level API allows developers to implement TWLO tech more quickly into an organization. This also allows TWLO to recognize revenue more quickly. These high level “use case” API carry higher margins.

The company sees this as the very early innings in the transition from hardware based legacy communication systems to software based solutions. TWLO clearly feels they are the industry leader currently.

One analyst asked why they aren’t pricing their products higher if competition isn’t a concern to which they replied that increasing customers and revenues is the number one goal. Profitability through higher margin products will come later. Long term GM are expected to be 60% to 65%.

Just thought I’d provide some thoughts fresh in my mind after listening to the call.

Take care,


I used Twilio today, had my first Uber ride. May have my second tomorrow. Unfortunately the first rider was not able to find me. There were two primary entrances to the very large building I was in and the first driver could not figure out how to pull into the primary public entrance (doubt it was a problem with the system). So, using Apple Pay with a mere finger print, I called for another Uber, and then noticed some other features such as call driver. Driver was there and pulled up to the front door in a wonderful Jaguar in 9 minutes. Good stuff. Twilio probably earned a penny or so from me, so kudos to me fellow shareholders.

As for TWLO, I still have not had time or energy to review more than the highlights of the earnings call. Non-catastrophic, so I say well done - given recent series of earnings from other companies.

A.J. brought up to large customers who will use Twilio for their call centers. Yes, that is a big thing as call centers are huge volume, and replacing and disrupting existing hard wired call centers such as Avaya use to make a mint from. Call centers also are integrated into other software and may incorporate, at least going forward, higher value products such as voice and video.

A few years ago on developer/employee/investor commented that Twilio was like buying a telecom company because Twilio will do with software through the cloud what was done through hardware until now. As for example, taking over the functions of a very expensive call center set up.

A very long runway to see this disruption through, should it so happen.

I actually do like the strategy of not overcharging, while still being the premium priced product. Twilio’s strategy is to get designed in, and once designed in, it will never be designed out. Over time customers will up design, adding premium returns and further embedding themselves in the product and creating more switching costs.

I think that pretty much covers it and I have not even read or listened to the transcript yet. That is a investment thesis and strategy one can live with for a long run investment if they can pull it off. So far, so good, as they are dominant.

Thanks for the updates A.J.



Throughout the call management made it painfully clear they are looking to expand revenues and customers. They were almost apologetic for achieving 59% margins in the quarter stating not to expect that near term again.

Hi Phoolio, Yes I thought they were almost apologetic about having made positive earnings, and wanted to make sure no one expected them to continue before their planned profit in Q4 2017. It reminded me a lot of Shopify, who seem to make sure they have a tiny loss every quarter so they can go for broke on grabbing market share with no one expecting them to make more profit each quarter. And coincidently also forecasting profits starting in Q4 2017. The very fact that both of them forecasted way in advance that they will be profitable in Q4 2017 means to me that they can turn on profits whenever they want. JMO.


Sounds good to me Saul.

TWLO up 9.2% today
there is this article from only a few days ago…
Why Twilio Inc’s Q4 Beat Isn’t Lifting its Stock Price
Sometime market reactions are instantaneous, sometimes they are slow motion