Baidu forecasts current-quarter revenue above estimates, shares rise

Michelle K. Wallace

A logo of Baidu is seen at the company’s headquarters in Beijing, following the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, China May 18, 2020. REUTERS/Tingshu Wang

(Reuters) – Chinese search engine giant Baidu Inc (BIDU.O) forecast second-quarter revenue above expectations after beating earnings estimates, as the world’s second-largest economy reopens after lockdowns imposed to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

The company’s U.S.-listed shares were up 5% in extended trading on Monday.

“With the pandemic coming under control in China, offline activities are rebounding and Baidu stands to benefit from a restart of the Chinese economy,” Chief Executive Officer Robin Li said in a statement.

Baidu, whose search engine dominates the market in China, forecast second-quarter revenue between 25.0 billion yuan and 27.3 billion yuan, while analysts on average had expected 25.55 billion yuan, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

Total revenue fell to 22.55 billion yuan (2.6 billion pounds) for the first quarter ended March 31, from 24.12 billion yuan a year earlier. Analysts on average had expected revenue of 21.93 billion yuan, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

On an adjusted basis, Baidu earned 8.84 yuan per American depository share. Analysts had expected 3.99 yuan per ADS.

($1 = 7.1086 Chinese yuan renminbi)

Reporting by Akanksha Rana in Bengaluru and Yingzhi Yang in Beijing; Editing by Krishna Chandra Eluri and Sriraj Kalluvila

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