Shopify Reports Slower Growth in Vendor Sales, Shares Fall 7 Percent

OTTAWA, Canada — Shopify beat analysts’ estimates for quarterly profit on Tuesday, but a slowing rate of growth in total sales by vendors using the e-commerce company’s software sent its US-listed shares down about 7 percent before the bell.

Shopify said gross merchandising volume rose just 54 percent compared with a 65 percent jump in the same period a year earlier.

Shopify, whose software enables merchants to sell everything from infant formula to cosmetics online, has been investing heavily to boost its market share by introducing augmented reality- (AR) and virtual reality-based applications.

Shopify AR, for instance, helps shoppers to view 3D models to assess whether the purchase of furniture, among others, will fit in a particular physical space.

The company’s operating expenses rose 53.4 percent to $195.2 million in the fourth quarter.

Shopify said its net loss narrowed to $1.5 million, or 1 cent per share, in the three months ended December 31, from about $3 million, or 3 cents per share, a year earlier.

Overall revenue rose to $343.9 million from $222.8 million.

Excluding items, the company earned 26 cents per share, beating the average analyst estimate of 20 cents, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

By Arundhati Sarkar and Shanti S Nair; editors: Sai Sachin Ravikumar and Arun Koyyur.

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