BETHESDA, Md. – February 20, 2008 – CoStar Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: CSGP), the number one provider of information services to the commercial real estate industry, today announced that net income for the year ended December 31, 2007 increased 28.5% to $16.0 million, or $0.82 per diluted share, compared to $12.4 million, or $0.65 per diluted share for 2006. EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, deprecation and amortization) for the year ended December 31, 2007 was $34.0 million, an increase of 31.3% compared to EBITDA of $25.9 million in 2006. Revenues for the year ended December 31, 2007 were $192.8 million, an increase of 21.3% over revenues of $158.9 million in 2006.
The overall earnings growth reflects continued sequential increases in core revenue, continuing high subscriber renewal rates, an increase in new subscribers and improved operational efficiencies.
"CoStar Group ended 2007 in a very strong financial position with an outstanding fourth quarter resulting from the organization's focus on growth, earnings leverage and cost stabilization," said CoStar Group CEO Andrew C.
Florance. "The significant investments we have made over the past three years to expand our commercial real estate coverage in the U.S. and U.K. have provided a clear advantage over other services in the marketplace. We continue to attract new customers to our expanded service platform, and renewal rates among core subscribers have continued to generate strong earnings growth and a positive outlook for 2008. As a result of our company's continued growth, we are projecting 2008 earnings to nearly double year-over-year, excluding the one-time gain on the U.K. lease assignment in 2007," said Florance.
"CoStar enjoyed especially robust subscriber growth in the fourth quarter, signing approximately 1,700 net new paying subscribers, which we believe affirms the value of our research-verified information service," said Florance. "The renewal rate for our subscription-based products remained strong at 91% for the quarter," he added.
""We fully expect this sustained earnings momentum resulting from the significant investments we made over the past several years to continue through 2008. As a result, we believe revenues will continue to grow over a relatively fixed cost base as we work towards achieving both a 30% EBITDA margin in our U.S. operations and break-even in our international operations by year-end," Florance said.
Revenues for the fourth quarter of 2007 were $50.8 million, a 20.8% increase compared to the same period a year ago. Net income increased to $9.7 million, or $0.50 per diluted share, for the fourth quarter of 2007 compared to net income of $3.5 million, or $0.18 per diluted share for the fourth quarter of 2006. EBITDA was $16.8 million for the fourth quarter of 2007 compared to $7.2 million for the fourth quarter 2006.
The fourth quarter 2007 results included a $7.6 million net gain on a lease settlement from the assignment of the leasehold interest in London office space by CoStar's wholly owned U.K. subsidiary following CoStar's acquisition in 2007 of Property Investment Exchange Limited (Propex). In addition, results for the quarter include the non-cash charges for equity compensation of $1.0 million, primarily included in general and administrative costs, selling and marketing expenses and cost of revenues.
As of December 31, 2007, the company had $187.4 million in cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments, and had no long-term debt.
"For the first quarter of 2008, we expect fully diluted net income per share of approximately $0.20 to $0.22," said CoStar Group Chief Financial Officer Brian J. Radecki. "For the full year of 2008, we expect fully diluted net income per share of approximately $1.00 to $1.05, which includes an estimated $5.0 million to $6.0 million in pre-tax, non-cash equity compensation charges related to the vesting of restricted stock and stock option grants. We expect to continue to grow earnings from U.S. operations through 2008 as a result of consistent core revenue growth combined with a relatively fixed cost base," added Radecki.
"For the first quarter of 2008, we expect a sequential quarterly increase in revenue of 2.0% to 4.0%, and for 2008 we expect overall revenue growth in the range of 14.0% to 16.0% over 2007," said Radecki.
The company expects capital expenditures to decline in 2008 to approximately $8.0 million to $9.0 million, including investments in facilities, photography, network equipment and workstations to support ongoing operations.
Management will conduct a conference call to discuss earnings results for the fourth quarter ended December 31, 2007 and the financial outlook for the first quarter of 2008 at 11:00 a.m. EST on Thursday, February 21, 2008.
The audio portion of the conference call will be broadcast live over the Internet at http://www.costar.com/corporate/investor/. To join the conference call by telephone, please call (888) 688-0419 from within the United States, or (706) 634-0964 from outside the United States. A replay of the conference call will be available two hours after the live call concludes through midnight on March 7, 2008. The replay telephone number is (800) 642-1687 within the United States or (706) 645-9291 outside the United States. Refer to Conference ID 33444915. The replay will also be available over the Internet at http://www.costar.com/corporate/investor/ for a period of time following the call.
Analysts/Investors: Brian J. Radecki - Chief Financial Officer, (301)664-9132, firstname.lastname@example.org
Media: Timothy J. Trainor - Communications Director, (301)208-7695, email@example.com
About CoStar Group, Inc.
CoStar Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: CSGP) is the number one provider of information services to commercial real estate professionals in the United States as well as the United Kingdom. CoStar's suite of services offers customers access via the Internet to the most comprehensive database of commercial real estate information throughout the U.S. as well as in the United Kingdom and France. Headquartered in Bethesda, MD, the company has approximately 1,300 employees, including the largest professional research organization in the industry. For more information, visit http://www.costar.com.