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Twitter Lost Active Users Last Quarter; CEO Dorsey Says More Product Changes Coming

Twitter sinks on awful growth numbers.

Bill Pugliano / Getty Images

Twitter confirmed (once again) Wall Street’s concern that the company isn’t growing fast enough. Or in this case, isn’t growing at all.

Twitter reported its Q4 earnings Wednesday, and didn’t add any new users last quarter, a first for the company. Twitter boasts 320 million total users, but its core users, which excludes people who receive tweets via text message, actually declined over the quarter to 305 million from 307 million. Analysts were predicting a slight jump of roughly three million new users in the quarter.

The positive takeaway from the company’s earning report is that its business appears to be keeping up with Wall Street’s expectations. Twitter reported profits of 16 cents per share on revenue of $710 million in Q4, a revenue jump of 48 percent.

Those numbers were in line with Wall Street’s predictions. Analysts were expecting profits of 12 cents per share on roughly $710 million in revenue for the quarter.

The stock is down almost 12 percent in after-hours trading thanks to the poor user growth.

Twitter is set to host an investor call at 2 pm PT and we’ll be listening in. The company already issued its commentary, which is usually read by executives over the call, so we’ll comb through that and update this story as we learn more.

Update: Twitter is trying to calm trigger-happy investors. The company tweeted from its investor relations account that its core user numbers so far in 2016 are akin to what the company saw in Q3 of last year. That is, Twitter says its user base is the same size now as it was in mid-2015. That’s better than losing users, but it’s still not growing.

More bad news for Twitter: The company lowered its guidance for Q1. Analysts were expecting revenue around $630 million for the quarter, and Twitter says it will deliver somewhere between $595 million and $610 million.

Twitter also announced that Periscope CEO Kayvon Beykpour (video below) has been promoted to the company’s executive team. He was originally reporting to product boss Kevin Weil, who left for rival Instagram late last month. Beykpour’s promotion is a clear indication of how important Periscope and video is to the company’s long-term plans.

One thing missing from the earnings report, though, is any new board members. Re/code reported earlier this week that the company is looking to add two new board members and was hoping to have those additions ready by its earnings announcement. That obviously didn’t happen.

Twitter stock is almost back to where it closed, we presume because of the announcement that its user base this quarter is back to Q3 levels.

Here’s Beykpour at our Code conference last year:

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