Scout24, the parent company of leading German property portal ImmoScout24, has today released its Q3 earnings report. The numbers reflect trends seen with fellow market-leading companies Zillow and REA Group and will make for pleasant reading for shareholders with revenues for the first nine months of 2020 rising 1% year on year to €262.2M despite the impact of a global pandemic.
EBITDA margin for Q3 is slightly down largely due to increased marketing spend with the resumption of the company’s growth strategy including the company’s first TV ad spend in 6 years. Despite the resumption of marketing spend, Q3 revenues are still 1% up year on year at €89.6M.
The company’s market-leading property portal ImmobilienScout24 is still offering free listings for a select group of private sellers, however, the company’s residential real estate segment remains “very robust” contributing 72% of group revenues and growing 2.9% over the first 9 months of 2020 largely thanks to “contractually secured sales with real estate agents during the Covid-19 crisis”.
In July the company acquired immoverkauf24, a property and finance portal, and the integration is reported to be well underway and progressing smoothly with Scout’s new acquisition contributing to a 5.7% year-on-year rise in revenue generated from professional customers (agents) in Q3.
Unsurprisingly the commercial real estate segment did not see such resilience during the pandemic. The segment which represents some 19% of group revenues saw a -1.5% drop in revenues and a -2.6% drop in ARPA for the quarter. As seen with fellow leading portal group REA in Australia, Scout24’s revenues from its media advertising segment fell both on a quarterly basis (-10.4%) and over the first 9 months of the year (-11.6%) as marketing spends around the world dwindled.
Unusually for a large property portal company, the number of listings on the site are tracked and reported in quarterly reports with the first 9 months of 2020 seeing a 4% year on year drop in listings to 420,464, although listings volumes recovered slightly in Q3 where they were only down 2.2% on 2019 numbers. As for other non-financial metrics, users and sessions were up for the first 9 months of the year (8% and 11.5% respectively), but that traffic increase slowed somewhat for Q3 (0.2% and 3.5%).
Despite dropping to €66.3 per share from a high of €79.5 in late August, the group’s share price remains well above pre-pandemic values with the market reacting favourably to today’s quarterly report in early trading this morning.