LinkedIn posts big earnings beat but shares barely budge

LinkedIn headquarters in Mountain View, Calif.
David Paul Morris | Bloomberg | Getty Images

With its soon-to-be parent company waiting in the wings, LinkedIn reported quarterly earnings and revenue that beat analysts' expectations on Thursday.

The social media company posted profit of $1.18 a share ex-items on revenue of $960 million.

The company's stock ticked up slightly in after-hours trade.

Analysts expected LinkedIn to report earnings of 91 cents a share on revenue of $959 million, according to a consensus estimate from Thomson Reuters.

LinkedIn is still in the process of being acquired by Microsoft in a $26.2 billion cash deal for $196 per share. Antitrust regulators in the United States, Canada and Brazil have already approved the deal. Microsoft filed for EU approval earlier this month, and hopes for the transaction to close prior to the end of 2016.

Business software company Salesforce is calling on European regulators to investigate possible antitrust issues with the acquisition, suggesting the deal threatens innovation and competition. Salesforce lost out to Microsoft in the bidding to buy LinkedIn.

The company's membership rate grew to 467 million, up 17 million from last quarter and up 18 percent year over year.

Its talent solutions, marketing solutions and premium subscriptions saw mixed revenue results this quarter.

Talent solutions saw revenues of $623 million and premium subscription sales increased to $162 million. Marketing solutions revenues dropped $6 million to $175 million this quarter, with sponsored content accounting for nearly two-thirds of total marketing revenue.

Correction: This story was updated to reflect that LinkedIn's third-quarter revenue was $960 million.