Box hits goal on positive free cash flow, quarterly results beat Street

Box's free cash flow turns positive

Box reported quarterly results on Wednesday that beat analyst expectations, and revenue that was above estimates. But the company's guidance for the first quarter was lighter than Wall Street's forecasts.

  • EPS: loss of 10 cents per share vs. loss of 14 cents per share, adjusted, expected by Thomson Reuters consensus estimate
  • Revenue: $109.9 million vs. $108.9 million expected by Thomson Reuters

That's compared to the comparable year-ago loss of 26 cents per share. Revenue was up 29 percent year-over-year from $85.0 million.

  • Q1 EPS guidance: Loss of 14 cents to 15 cents vs. loss of 12 cents per share, adjusted, expected by Thomson Reuters
  • Q1 revenue guidance: Range of $114 million to $115 million vs. $115.1 million expected by Thomson Reuters

Still, the company hit a major goal: It generated positive free cash flow for the first time in the fourth quarter.

"We don't need to raise any more capital in the market — we are self-sufficient," CEO Aaron Levie told CNBC. "We got here through growth of the business."

Shares were down slightly after hours.

The enterprise cloud technology company has seen shares rise more than 50 percent over the past year, as it expanded in Europe, added more collaboration tools, and ramped up in industries like finance, government and science. The company has integrations with tech heavyweights like Google, Mircosoft and IBM, and 71,000 business customers ranging from AstraZeneca to Southwest Airlines.

Aaron Levie, CEO, Box
Scott Mlyn | CNBC

Levie has also been very outspoken against President Donald Trump, though he has said he will "work constructively with D.C." The company announced last month it would donate $100,000 to the International Rescue Committee to support refugees in conflict zones, amid new U.S. policies that have made it more difficult for refugees to enter the United States.

"We care a lot about immigration," Levie told CNBC on Wednesday. "We have a range of talent from around the world. That's what makes Box as strong as it is."

Fresh off the earnings report, Levie also had some advice for Snap CEO Evan Spiegel, who will brave the public markets for the first time on Thursday.

"Overcommunicate your strategy," Levie said. "Be as clear as possible about your vision. Snap has a lot of potential. Snap must now be predictable, consistent and achieve the goals they laid out."

— Reporting by CNBC's Josh Lipton and Sally Shin.

Levie will be on CNBC's "Mad Money" on Thursday.