First Data Halves Loss as Adjusted Profit Tops Analyst Estimates

  • Net loss narrows to $56 million from $112 million a year ago
  • Revenue climbs 3% to $2.78 billion, in line with estimates

First Data Corp., the payments processor that went public last year, halved its losses in the first quarter as revenue increased.

The net loss narrowed to $56 million from $112 million a year earlier, the New York-based firm said Monday in a statement. Adjusted profit, which excludes some costs tied to the October initial public offering and debt extinguishment charges, was 24 cents a share, the company said. That beat by one cent the average estimate of 21 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.

Chief Executive Officer Frank Bisignano, who left JPMorgan Chase & Co. in 2013 to run KKR & Co.-backed First Data, is under pressure to demonstrate that he’s able to turn around a business laden with debt and facing competition from startups. The payments network paid him $51.6 million in 2015, including more than $44 million in stock and option awards, a $1.5 million salary and a $5 million cash bonus.

“Our results this quarter, with solid revenue growth, margin expansion and cash generation, were matched by rigorous expense management,” Bisignano, 56, said in the statement.

Total revenue climbed 3 percent to $2.78 billion from a year earlier, in line with analysts’ estimates, while expenses rose 4.3 percent to $2.54 billion, according to the statement. The company booked a $46 million charge in the quarter for retiring debt, and $52 million for IPO-related compensation costs.

First Data shares tumbled 19 percent this year through April 22, compared with the 0.5 percent decline of the 235-company Russell 1000 Financial Services Index.

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