Ahead of the Bell: Pandora stock sings the blues

Pandora tumbles in premarket as profit view comes in low; stock has more than doubled in '13

Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) -- Pandora investors are singing the blues. Shares of the Internet radio company slid before Friday's opening bell after it issued a disappointing profit prediction for the current quarter.

Pandora Media Inc. expects earnings, excluding one-time items, of 3 to 6 cents per share. Wall Street had forecast 9 cents per share, according to FactSet. The company's revenue estimate did beat analysts' average estimate.

For the fiscal year, which runs through January, Pandora expects adjusted per-share earnings from breakeven to 5 cents on $640 million to $655 million in revenue. Analysts had expected earnings of 5 cents per share and $633 million in revenue.

But many analysts remained upbeat. Wedbush analyst Michael Pachter said that Pandora has significantly improved its ability to make money, particularly on mobile devices.

The company also reversed its March decision to limit free listening on mobile devices. It had done so to limit royalty costs and convert more listeners into subscribers. Pachter said the change should help increase revenue growth and market share gains.

In premarket trading Friday, Pandora shares fell $1.39, or 6.4 percent, to $20.32. The stock has more than doubled this year.

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