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GitLab shares rocket 31% as software vendor boosts forecast, announces generative A.I. plans

People celebrate the Gitlab IPO at the Nasdaq, October 14, 2021.

Source: Nasdaq

GitLab shares rose 31% on Tuesday, after the provider of code-deployment software reported a narrower loss than analysts expected and bumped up its full-year forecast.

The stock enjoyed its best day since GitLab’s 2021 Nasdaq debut. It’s still roughly 65% below its peak from November of that year, the month that tech stocks reached record levels. After that, investors began shifting money out of risky assets on concerns of slowing growth and rising interest rates.

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GitLab said that revenue in the quarter ended April 30 jumped 45% to $126.9 million from $87.4 million a year earlier. The company had an adjusted loss of 6 cents per share, according to a statement. Analysts surveyed by Refinitiv had expected sales of $117.8 million and an adjusted loss of 14 cents per share.

GitLab’s net loss widened to $52.9 million from $26.6 million in the year-ago quarter.

For the 2024 fiscal year, GitLab sees an adjusted loss of 14 cents to 18 cents per share on revenue of $541 million to $543 million. Analysts had expected an adjusted loss of 26 cents per share and sales of $532.6 million. In March GitLab had called for an adjusted per-share loss of 24 cents to 29 cents on revenue of $529 million to $533 million.

During the quarter, GitLab raised the price of its premium tier to $29 per user per month from $19.

“To date, customer churn is unchanged for the premium customers who renewed in April,” GitLab finance chief Brian Robins said on Monday’s call with analysts. He added that average annual recurring revenue per customer “increased in line with our expectations.”

Sid Sijbrandij, GitLab’s CEO, said more revenue could come from a generative artificial intelligence add-on that will cost $9 per user per month when billed annually.

Sijbrandij, who co-founded the company over a decade ago, had some encouraging personal news to share. Three months after announcing he had chosen to undergo treatment for osteosarcoma, Sijbrandij said on the call that there was “no sign of detectable disease,” adding that he’s excited about the company’s future and “retaining my role as CEO and chair.”

The business still has challenges. Sales cycles took longer than usual during the quarter, and customers reduced the number of seats they bought, Robins said.

But the financial numbers led several analysts to raise their price targets on GitLab stock.

“The quarter was stronger than most expected, and the company was able to maintain a very positive and conservative outlook — a contrast to last quarter,” wrote Piper Sandler analysts Rob Owens and Ethan Weeks in a note to clients.

The analysts have the equivalent of a buy rating on the company’s stock and lifted their price target to $52 from $50. GitLab shares closed at $46.44.

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