IZEA Worldwide, Inc. (NASDAQ: IZEA), the premier provider of influencer marketing technology, data, and services for the world’s leading brands, reported its financial and operational results for the fourth quarter ended December 31, 2020.
Q4 2020 Financial Summary Compared to Q4 2019
-- Total revenue increased 10% to $6.4 million, compared to $5.8 million. -- Managed Services unit revenue increased 17% to $5.9 million, compared to $5.0 million. -- SaaS Services unit revenue decreased 34% to $537,000, compared to $811,000. -- Total costs and expenses decreased to $7.4 million, compared to $8.2 million. -- Net loss was $1.0 million, compared to a net loss of $2.3 million. -- Adjusted EBITDA* improved to $(0.5) million, compared to $(1.3) million.
Q4 2020 Operational Highlights
-- Delivered all-time record Q4 Managed Services Bookings. -- Hit all-time record count of customers licensing IZEA SaaS products in December. -- Opened the Shake Marketplace for business. -- Milestone of one billion pieces of content analyzed by BrandGraph. -- Awarded first contract to promote a branch of the U.S. Military.
* Adjusted EBITDA is a non-GAAP financial measure. Refer to the definition and reconciliation of this measure under “Use of Key Metrics and Non-GAAP Financial Measures”.
“The fourth quarter of 2020 marked the return to growth for IZEA during the most challenging and dynamic year in the history of our company,” said Ted Murphy, IZEA’s Chairman and CEO. “Our overall revenue grew 10% in the quarter, driven largely by a 47% YoY increase in Managed Services bookings in Q4. The majority of those bookings were signed in the month of December, and we expect those bookings to be recognized over an average of 6 months. We also saw substantial improvements of more than 50% for both net income and Adjusted EBITDA during the period, along with a margin improvement of just over 300 basis points.”
“As we expected, revenue from our SaaS Services was challenged in the 4th quarter as we continued to transition through our new pricing model, ” continued Murphy. “The acquisition of new enterprise IZEAx customers in 2020 was slow through Q3, and many of our existing customers churned or reduced their marketplace spend as the pandemic hit. That revenue takes time to rebuild, especially under our more affordable pricing tiers. That said, we onboarded a record number of new IZEAx customers in Q4, and despite the decreases in overall SaaS Services revenue, our count of active SaaS customers continues to grow and hit an all-time high again in March.”
“IZEA ended the fourth quarter with $33.0 million in cash and subsequently raised $34.3 million under an ATM offering in the first quarter of 2021,” said Murphy. “We have been making strategic investments in technology, marketing, and people, to best position ourselves to more aggressively grow in 2021 and beyond. There is a vast amount of opportunity in the influencer marketing industry. We intend to relentlessly pursue growth in our client base, partnerships, and brand, in order to capture the largest share possible of the industry we created.”
Q4 2020 Financial Results
Total revenue in the fourth quarter of 2020 increased 10% to $6.4 million, compared to $5.8 million in the fourth quarter of 2019, with revenue from Managed Services increasing by $842,000, or 17%, to $5.9 million in the fourth quarter of 2020 compared to the fourth quarter of 2019 and revenue from SaaS Services decreasing by $274,000, or 34%, in the fourth quarter of 2020 compared to the fourth quarter of 2019.
Revenue from Managed Services improved due to the sharp increase in bookings for managed services as several customers completed large fourth quarter projects based on their marketing objectives, which included shifting more of their spend to influencer marketing campaigns.
Revenue from SaaS Services decreased primarily as a result of lower spend levels (“gross billings,” a key metric as further defined below) from our SaaS marketers and, as a result of competitive pricing efforts, our margins on those spends were reduced. Gross billings for SaaS Services decreased 23% to $2.2 million in Q4 2020, compared to $2.8 million in Q4 2019. Certain of our SaaS marketers decreased their spend levels as they transitioned from the TapInfluence platform to IZEAx and curtailed spending throughout 2020. The reduction in these gross billings resulted in the $274,000 decrease in SaaS Services Revenue in the fourth quarter of 2020 compared to the fourth quarter of 2019.
Total costs and expenses decreased 9% in the fourth quarter of 2020 to $7.4 million, compared to $8.2 million in the corresponding quarter of 2019. This decrease was due to a $418,000 impairment of intangible assets in Q4 2019 and a $422,000 decrease in personnel expenses due to a 14% decrease in headcount in Q4 2020 as compared to Q4 2019 as a result of natural attrition during the year that we did not replace.
Net loss in the fourth quarter of 2020 was $1.0 million, or $(0.02) per share, as compared to a net loss of $2.3 million, or $(0.07) per share, in the fourth quarter of 2019, based on 50.1 million and 34.5 million average shares outstanding, respectively.
Adjusted EBITDA (a non-GAAP measure management uses as a proxy for operating cash flow, as defined below) improved 64%, or $825,000, to $(0.5) million in the fourth quarter of 2020 compared to $(1.3) million in the fourth quarter of 2019. Adjusted EBITDA as a percentage of revenue in the fourth quarter of 2020 was negative seven percent ((7)%) compared to negative twenty-two percent ((22)%) in the fourth quarter of 2019.
We raised $2.7 million from sale of securities through our at-the-market offering (the “ATM”) in Q4 2020 and our cash balance as of December 31, 2020 was $33.0 million. From June 2020 to date, we have raised total gross proceeds of $62.8 million through the ATM.
IZEA will hold a conference call to discuss its fourth quarter 2020 results on Tuesday, March 30th at 5:00 p.m. Eastern time. Management will host the call, followed by a question and answer period.
Date: Tuesday, March 30, 2021
Time: 5:00 p.m. Eastern time
Toll-free dial-in number: 1-877-407-4018
International dial-in number: 1-201-689-8471
The conference call will be webcast live and available for replay via the investors section of our website at https://izea.com/. Please call the conference telephone number five minutes prior to the start time. An operator will register your name and organization. A replay of the call will be available after 8:00 p.m. Eastern time on the same day through April 6, 2021.
Toll-free replay number: 1-844-512-2921
International replay number: 1-412-317-6671
Replay ID: 13717582
About IZEA Worldwide, Inc.
IZEA Worldwide, Inc. (“IZEA”) is a marketing technology company providing software and professional services that enable brands to collaborate and transact with the full spectrum of today’s top social influencers and content creators. The company serves as a champion for the growing Creator Economy, enabling individuals to monetize their content, creativity, and influence. IZEA launched the industry’s first-ever influencer marketing platform in 2006 and has since facilitated nearly 4 million transactions between online buyers and sellers. Leading brands and agencies partner with IZEA to increase digital engagement, diversify brand voice, scale content production, and drive measurable return on investment.
Use of Key Metrics and Non-GAAP Financial Measures
We define gross billings, a key metric, as the total dollar value of the amounts earned from our customers for the services we performed, or the amounts billed to our customers for their self-service purchase of goods and services on our platforms. Gross billings for Legacy Workflow and Marketplace Spend (which are included in SaaS Services) differs from revenue for these services reported in our consolidated statements of operations. These services are presented net of the amounts we pay to the third-party creators providing the content or sponsorship services. Gross billings for all other revenue types equal the revenue reported in our consolidated statements of operations.
We consider this metric to be an important indicator of our performance as it measures the total dollar volume of transactions generated through our marketplaces. Tracking gross billings allows us to evaluate our transaction totals on an equal basis in order for us to see our contribution margins by revenue stream so that we can better understand where we should be allocating our resources. Additionally, because we invoice our customers on a gross basis based on our services or their transactions plus a fee, tracking gross billings is critical as it pertains to our credit risk and cash flow.
Bookings is a key metric and is our measure of all sales orders minus any known or expected cancellations or refunds in a period. Management uses bookings to inform expectations of total sales activity. Bookings are not always an indicator of revenue for the quarter and could be subject to future adjustment. Revenue from Managed Services bookings are typically recognized over a 6-month period on average.
“Adjusted EBITDA” is a non-GAAP financial measure under the rules of the Securities and Exchange Commission. EBITDA is commonly defined as “earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization.” IZEA defines “Adjusted EBITDA,” also a non-GAAP financial measure, as earnings or loss before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, non-cash stock related compensation, gain or loss on asset disposals or impairment, changes in acquisition cost estimates, and certain other unusual or non-cash income and expense items such as gains or losses on settlement of liabilities and exchanges, and changes in the fair value of derivatives, if applicable.
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