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May 07, 2019

2U, Inc. Reports First Quarter 2019 Financial Results

Delivers 32% year-over-year growth

LANHAM, Md., May 7, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- 2U, Inc. (Nasdaq: TWOU), a global leader in education technology, today reported financial and operating results for the first quarter ended March 31, 2019.

First Quarter 2019 Results

  • Revenue was $122.2 million, an increase of 32% from $92.3 million in the first quarter of 2018.
  • Net loss was $(21.6) million, or $(0.37) per share, compared to $(14.9) million, or $(0.28) per share, in the first quarter of 2018.
  • Adjusted net loss was $(8.6) million, or $(0.15) per share, compared to $(6.1) million, or $(0.12) per share, in the first quarter of 2018.
  • Adjusted EBITDA loss was $(3.2) million, compared to $(1.5) million in the first quarter of 2018.

"2U delivered another strong quarter," Co-Founder and CEO Christopher "Chip" Paucek said. "Our business is transforming and diversifying in exciting ways that further cement 2U's market-leading position and allow us to better meet the demands of lifelong learners, all while delivering sustainable growth and great outcomes in shared alignment with our partners."

Recent Developments

2U recently announced the following:

  • May 6, 2019: A top workplace recognition by The Denver Post for the third consecutive year.
  • April 7, 2019: An Agreement and Plan of Merger and Reorganization to acquire Trilogy Education Services, Inc. ("Trilogy"), a workforce accelerator that empowers the world's leading universities to prepare professionals for high-growth careers in the digital economy. Trilogy's intensive, skills-based training programs bridge regional talent gaps in coding, data analytics, UX/UI, and cybersecurity in more than 50 cities around the globe. The completion of the acquisition is subject to the expiration or termination of the waiting period under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976, as amended, and certain other customary closing conditions.
  • April 3, 2019: A new partnership with Arcadia University to deliver two new hybrid degrees for healthcare and medical professionals.
  • February 25, 2019: A new partnership with the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences at Case Western Reserve University to deliver an online Master of Science in Social Administration (MSSA).

Segment Name Change

As of the date of this earnings release, 2U has changed the name of its Short Course Segment to Alternative Credential Segment. We elected to change the name of this segment from Short Course to Alternative Credential because we believe the name, Alternative Credential, more accurately describes this segment as we expand our offerings along the career curriculum continuum.

Financial Outlook

Based on information available as of today, 2U is issuing the following guidance for the second quarter and full-year of 2019. This guidance assumes foreign currency exchange rates as of March 31, 2019 for the U.S. dollar/South African rand and the U.S. dollar/British pound. Other than transaction costs incurred in the first quarter of 2019, it does not include the impact of the Trilogy acquisition that the Company expects to close in late-May 2019.

   

2Q 2019

 

FY 2019

 
   

(in millions, except per share amounts)

 

Revenue

 

$124.3 - $125.0

 

$534.0 - $537.0

 

Net loss

 

$(36.0) - $(35.5)

 

$(79.0) - $(77.2)

 

Net loss per share

 

$(0.61) - $(0.60)

 

$(1.35) - $(1.32)

 

Adjusted net loss

 

$(20.8) - $(20.3)

 

$(20.0) - $(18.2)

 

Adjusted net loss per share

 

$(0.36) - $(0.35)

 

$(0.34) - $(0.31)

 

Weighted-average shares of common stock outstanding, basic

 

58.6

 

58.7

 

Adjusted EBITDA (loss)

 

$(13.1) - $(12.6)

 

$12.5 - $14.3

 

Stock-based compensation expense

 

$14.0 - $14.2

 

$52.2 - $52.6

 

2U expects that of the revenue it recognizes in the second half of 2019, approximately 48% will be recognized in the third quarter.

Note that 2U's previously announced intention to increase marketing spend in the first half of 2019 is reflected in this guidance and has the effect of driving larger second quarter losses than would be expected based on typical performance patterns. Further note that cost seasonality in the second and fourth quarters typically reduces margins in the first half of each year and improves margins in the second half of each year, so second-half margins should not be viewed as being a run rate for the first half of the following year.

Non-GAAP Measures

To supplement the Company's consolidated financial statements, which are prepared and presented in accordance with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles ("GAAP"), we use adjusted EBITDA, adjusted EBITDA margin, adjusted net income (loss) and adjusted net income (loss) per share, which are non-GAAP financial measures.

We define adjusted EBITDA as net income or net loss, as applicable, before net interest income (expense), taxes, depreciation and amortization expense, foreign currency gains or losses, acquisition-related gains or losses, transaction costs (including advisory fees and integration and restructuring expenses) and stock-based compensation expense. Some or all of these items may not be applicable in any given reporting period. Adjusted EBITDA margin represents adjusted EBITDA as a percentage of revenue.

We define adjusted net income (loss) as net income or net loss, as applicable, before foreign currency gains or losses, acquisition-related gains or losses, transaction costs (including advisory fees and integration and restructuring expenses) and stock-based compensation expense. Adjusted net income (loss) per share is calculated as adjusted net income (loss) divided by diluted weighted-average shares of common stock outstanding for periods which result in adjusted net income, and basic weighted-average shares outstanding for periods which result in an adjusted net loss.

As of the date of this earnings release, we revised our definition of adjusted EBITDA and adjusted net income (loss) to exclude the impact of transaction costs in connection with the acquisition of Trilogy. We believe this change is meaningful to investors because we did not have material transaction costs in prior periods and as a result, excluding the impact of such costs beginning in this period facilitates a period-to-period comparison of our business.

The principal limitation of these non-GAAP financial measures is that they exclude significant expenses that are required by GAAP to be recorded in the Company's financial statements. These non-GAAP measures are key metrics Company management uses to compare the Company's performance to that of prior periods for trend analyses and for budgeting and planning purposes. These measures also provide useful information to investors and analysts relating to 2U's financial condition and results of operations. These financial measures are not intended to be considered in isolation or as a substitute for, or superior to, financial information prepared and presented in accordance with GAAP. In addition, these financial measures may be different from non-GAAP financial measures used by other companies, limiting their usefulness for comparison purposes.

For more information on 2U's non-GAAP financial measures and reconciliations of such measures to the nearest GAAP measures, see the reconciliation tables at the end of this press release under the heading "Reconciliation of Non-GAAP Measures." 2U urges investors to review these reconciliations and not to rely on any single financial measure to evaluate the Company's business.

Conference Call Information

What:

2U, Inc.'s first quarter 2019 financial results conference call

When:

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Time:

5 p.m. ET

Live Call:

(877) 359-9508

Webcast:

investor.2U.com

About 2U, Inc. (Nasdaq: TWOU)

Eliminating the back row in higher education is more than just a metaphor, it's our mission. For more than a decade, 2U, Inc., a global leader in education technology, has been improving lives by powering world-class digital education. As a trusted partner and brand steward of great universities, we build, deliver, and support online graduate programs and certificates for working adults. Our industry-leading short courses, offered by GetSmarter, are designed to equip lifelong learners with in-demand career skills. To learn more, visit 2U.com. #NoBackRow

Cautionary Language Concerning Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements regarding our future business expectations, which are subject to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. All statements other than statements of historical facts contained in this press release, including statements regarding the acquisition of Trilogy, future results of the operations and financial position of 2U, Inc., including financial targets, business strategy, and plans and objectives for future operations, are forward-looking statements. 2U has based these forward-looking statements largely on its estimates of its financial results and its current expectations and projections about future events and financial trends that it believes may affect its financial condition, results of operations, business strategy, short-term and long-term business operations and objectives, and financial needs as of the date of this press release. We undertake no obligation to update these statements as a result of new information or future events. These forward-looking statements are subject to a number of risks, uncertainties and assumptions that could cause actual results to differ materially from the results predicted, including, risks related to the acquisition of Trilogy, including failure to obtain applicable regulatory approvals in a timely manner or at all, integration risks and failure to achieve the anticipated benefits of the Trilogy acquisition, trends in the higher education market and the market for online education, and expectations for growth in those markets; the acceptance, adoption and growth of online learning by colleges and universities, faculty, students, employers, accreditors and state and federal licensing bodies; our ability to comply with evolving regulations and legal obligations related to data privacy, data protection and information security; our expectations about the potential benefits of our cloud-based software-as-a-service, or SaaS, technology and technology-enabled services to university clients and students; our dependence on third parties to provide certain technological services or components used in our platform; our ability to meet the anticipated launch dates of our graduate programs and short courses; our expectations about the predictability, visibility and recurring nature of our business model; our ability to acquire new university clients and expand our graduate programs and short courses with existing university clients; our ability to successfully integrate the operations of Get Educated International Proprietary Limited, or GetSmarter, achieve the expected benefits of the acquisition and manage, expand and grow the combined company; our ability to execute our growth strategy in the international, undergraduate and non-degree alternative markets; our ability to continue to acquire prospective students for our graduate programs and short courses; our ability to affect or increase student retention in our graduate programs; our ability to attract, hire and retain qualified employees; our expectations about the scalability of our cloud-based platform; our expectations regarding future expenses in relation to future revenue; potential changes in regulations applicable to us or our university clients; and our expectations regarding the amount of time our cash balances and other available financial resources will be sufficient to fund our operations. These and other potential risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ from the results predicted are more fully detailed under the heading "Risk Factors" in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2018 and other reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Moreover, 2U operates in a very competitive and rapidly changing environment. New risks emerge from time to time. It is not possible for 2U management to predict all risks, nor can 2U assess the impact of all factors on its business or the extent to which any factor, or combination of factors, may cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in any forward-looking statements 2U may make. In light of these risks, uncertainties and assumptions, the forward-looking events and circumstances discussed in this press release may not occur and actual results could differ materially and adversely from those anticipated.

Investor Relations Contact: Ed Goodwin, 2U, Inc., egoodwin@2U.com

Media Contact: Molly Forman, 2U, Inc., mforman@2U.com

2U, Inc.

Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheets

(in thousands, except share and per share amounts)

 
   

March 31,
2019

 

December 31,
2018

 
   

(unaudited)

     

Assets

         

Current assets

         

Cash and cash equivalents

 

$

423,606

 

$

449,772

 

Investments

 

 

25,000

 

Accounts receivable, net

 

70,262

 

32,636

 

Prepaid expenses and other assets

 

28,260

 

14,272

 

Total current assets

 

522,128

 

521,680

 

Property and equipment, net

 

54,098

 

52,299

 

Right-of-use assets

 

33,070

 

 

Goodwill

 

61,498

 

61,852

 

Amortizable intangible assets, net

 

144,957

 

136,605

 

University payments and other assets, non-current

 

48,659

 

34,918

 

Total assets

 

$

864,410

 

$

807,354

 

Liabilities and stockholders' equity

         

Current liabilities

         

Accounts payable and accrued expenses

 

$

48,502

 

$

27,647

 

Accrued compensation and related benefits

 

16,225

 

23,001

 

Deferred revenue

 

24,531

 

8,345

 

Lease liability

 

4,871

 

 

Other current liabilities

 

8,104

 

9,487

 

Total current liabilities

 

102,233

 

68,480

 

Deferred government grant obligations

 

3,500

 

3,500

 

Deferred tax liabilities, net

 

6,086

 

6,949

 

Lease liability, non-current

 

57,359

 

 

Other liabilities, non-current

 

637

 

23,416

 

Total liabilities

 

169,815

 

102,345

 

Stockholders' equity

         

Preferred stock, $0.001 par value, 5,000,000 shares authorized, none issued

 

 

 

Common stock, $0.001 par value, 200,000,000 shares authorized, 58,189,318 shares issued and outstanding as of March 31, 2019; 57,968,493 shares issued and outstanding as of December 31, 2018

 

58

 

58

 

Additional paid-in capital

 

969,143

 

957,631

 

Accumulated deficit

 

(265,720)

 

(244,166)

 

Accumulated other comprehensive loss

 

(8,886)

 

(8,514)

 

Total stockholders' equity

 

694,595

 

705,009

 

Total liabilities and stockholders' equity

 

$

864,410

 

$

807,354

 

 

2U, Inc.

Condensed Consolidated Statements of Operations and Comprehensive Loss

(unaudited, in thousands, except share and per share amounts)

 
   

Three Months Ended
March 31,

 
   

2019

 

2018

 

Revenue

 

$

122,234

 

$

92,288

 

Costs and expenses

         

Curriculum and teaching

 

6,701

 

4,307

 

Servicing and support

 

20,174

 

15,233

 

Technology and content development

 

19,794

 

13,840

 

Marketing and sales

 

76,961

 

53,058

 

General and administrative

 

23,023

 

21,869

 

Total costs and expenses

 

146,653

 

108,307

 

Loss from operations

 

(24,419)

 

(16,019)

 

Interest income

 

2,349

 

342

 

Interest expense

 

(55)

 

(27)

 

Other expense, net

 

(370)

 

(395)

 

Loss before income taxes

 

(22,495)

 

(16,099)

 

Income tax benefit

 

941

 

1,228

 

Net loss

 

$

(21,554)

 

$

(14,871)

 

Net loss per share, basic and diluted

 

$

(0.37)

 

$

(0.28)

 

Weighted-average shares of common stock outstanding, basic and diluted

 

58,138,692

 

52,687,299

 

Other comprehensive loss

         

Foreign currency translation adjustments, net of tax of $0 for all periods presented

 

(372)

 

4,632

 

Comprehensive loss

 

$

(21,926)

 

$

(10,239)

 

 

2U, Inc.

Condensed Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows

(unaudited, in thousands)

 
   

Three Months Ended 

March 31,

 
   

2019

 

2018

 

Cash flows from operating activities

         

Net loss

 

$

(21,554)

 

$

(14,871)

 

Adjustments to reconcile net loss to net cash used in operating activities:

         

Depreciation and amortization expense

 

9,698

 

7,375

 

Stock-based compensation expense

 

9,584

 

7,122

 

Non-cash lease expense

 

2,634

 

 

Changes in operating assets and liabilities:

         

Accounts receivable, net

 

(37,522)

 

(26,109)

 

Payments to university clients

 

(10,595)

 

(3,826)

 

Prepaid expenses and other assets

 

(10,489)

 

(4,306)

 

Accounts payable and accrued expenses

 

17,536

 

6,010

 

Accrued compensation and related benefits

 

(6,768)

 

(5,437)

 

Deferred revenue

 

16,215

 

14,484

 

Other liabilities, net

 

(1,640)

 

331

 

Other

 

373

 

395

 

Net cash used in operating activities

 

(32,528)

 

(18,832)

 

Cash flows from investing activities

         

Purchases of property and equipment

 

(3,164)

 

(1,856)

 

Additions of amortizable intangible assets

 

(13,570)

 

(21,805)

 

Purchase of equity interests

 

(2,500)

 

 

Proceeds from maturities of investments

 

25,000

 

 

Advances repaid by university clients

 

200

 

 

Net cash provided by (used in) investing activities

 

5,966

 

(23,661)

 

Cash flows from financing activities

         

Proceeds from exercise of stock options

 

1,928

 

2,120

 

Tax withholding payments associated with settlement of restricted stock units

 

 

(1,002)

 

Payments for acquisition of amortizable intangible assets

 

(1,283)

 

 

Net cash provided by financing activities

 

645

 

1,118

 

Effect of exchange rate changes on cash

 

(249)

 

115

 

Net decrease in cash and cash equivalents

 

(26,166)

 

(41,260)

 

Cash and cash equivalents, beginning of period

 

449,772

 

223,370

 

Cash and cash equivalents, end of period

 

$

423,606

 

$

182,110

 

 

2U, Inc.

Reconciliation of Non-GAAP Measures

(unaudited)

 

The following table presents a reconciliation of net loss to adjusted net loss for each of the periods indicated:

 
   

Three Months Ended
March 31,

 
   

2019

 

2018

 
   

(in thousands, except share 

and per share amounts)

 

Net loss

 

$

(21,554)

 

$

(14,871)

 

Adjustments:

         

Foreign currency loss

 

370

 

395

 

Amortization of acquired intangible assets

 

1,426

 

1,680

 

Income tax benefit on amortization of acquired intangible assets

 

(391)

 

(460)

 

Transaction costs

 

1,931

 

 

Stock-based compensation expense

 

9,584

 

7,122

 

Total adjustments

 

12,920

 

8,737

 

Adjusted net loss

 

$

(8,634)

 

$

(6,134)

 

Net loss per share, basic and diluted (1)

 

$

(0.37)

 

$

(0.28)

 

Adjusted net loss per share, basic and diluted (1)

 

$

(0.15)

 

$

(0.12)

 

Weighted-average shares of common stock outstanding, basic and diluted

 

58,138,692

 

52,687,299

 
 
         

(1)

The Company computes net income (loss) per share and/or adjusted net income (loss) per share using diluted weighted-average shares of common stock outstanding for periods which result in net income and/or adjusted net income, and uses basic weighted-average shares of common stock outstanding for periods which result in net loss and/or adjusted net loss.

 

The following table presents a reconciliation of net loss to adjusted EBITDA (loss) for each of the periods indicated:

 
   

Three Months Ended
March 31,

 
   

2019

 

2018

 
   

(in thousands)

 

Net loss

 

$

(21,554)

 

$

(14,871)

 

Adjustments:

         

Interest income

 

(2,349)

 

(342)

 

Interest expense

 

55

 

27

 

Foreign currency loss

 

370

 

395

 

Depreciation and amortization expense

 

9,698

 

7,375

 

Income tax benefit

 

(941)

 

(1,228)

 

Transaction costs

 

1,931

 

 

Stock-based compensation expense

 

9,584

 

7,122

 

Total adjustments

 

18,348

 

13,349

 

Adjusted EBITDA (loss)

 

$

(3,206)

 

$

(1,522)

 
 

 

2U, Inc.

Reconciliation of Non-GAAP Measures

(unaudited)

 

The following table presents (i) a reconciliation of net loss guidance to adjusted net income (loss) guidance and adjusted EBITDA (loss) guidance and (ii) a reconciliation of net loss per share guidance to adjusted net income (loss) per share guidance, each at the midpoint of the ranges provided by the Company, for each of the periods indicated:

 
   

Three Months Ending

 

Year Ending

 
   

June 30, 2019

 

December 31, 2019

 
   

$

 

$/Share

 

$

 

$/Share

 
   

(in thousands, except per share amounts)

 

Net loss

 

$

(35,700)

 

$

(0.61)

 

$

(78,075)

 

$

(1.33)

 

Foreign currency loss

 

 

 

375

 

 

Amortization of acquired intangible assets

 

1,600

 

0.03

 

6,200

 

0.11

 

Income tax benefit on amortization of acquired intangible assets

 

(425)

 

(0.01)

 

(1,700)

 

(0.03)

 

Transaction costs **

 

 

 

1,950

 

0.03

 

Stock-based compensation expense

 

13,975

 

0.24

 

52,200

 

0.89

 

Adjusted net loss

 

(20,550)

 

(0.35)

 

(19,050)

 

(0.33)

 

Net interest income

 

(950)

 

*

 

(4,525)

 

*

 

Depreciation and amortization expense

 

8,925

 

*

 

36,650

 

*

 

Income tax (benefit) expense

 

(275)

 

*

 

375

 

*

 

Adjusted EBITDA (loss)

 

$

(12,850)

 

$

*

 

$

13,450

 

$

*

 

Projected weighted-average shares of common stock outstanding, basic

     

58,600

     

58,700

 
                               

*       

Not provided.

**     

Transaction costs related to Trilogy are not forecasted in the second quarter or for the remainder of the year. The year end expenses presented only related to those expenses actually incurred in the first quarter of 2019.

 

2U, Inc.

Key Financial Performance Metrics

(unaudited)

 

Full Course Equivalent Enrollments

 

Graduate Program Segment

 

The following table sets forth the full course equivalent enrollments and average revenue per full course equivalent enrollment in our Graduate Program Segment for the last eight quarters.

 
   

Q2 '17

 

Q3 '17

 

Q4 '17

 

Q1 '18

 

Q2 '18

 

Q3 '18

 

Q4 '18

 

Q1 '19

 

Graduate Program full course equivalent
    enrollments

 

23,903

 

24,062

 

27,082

 

29,770

 

30,548

 

32,665

 

34,695

 

39,512

 
                                   

Graduate Program average revenue per 
   full course equivalent enrollment

 

$

2,719

 

$

2,740

 

$

2,758

 

$

2,706

 

$

2,658

 

$

2,747

 

$

2,792

 

$

2,637

 
                                                   

 

Alternative Credential Segment

 

The following table sets forth the full course equivalent enrollments and average revenue per full course equivalent enrollment in our Alternative Credential Segment for the last seven quarters, since the acquisition of GetSmarter on July 1, 2017.

 
   

Q3 '17

 

Q4 '17

 

Q1 '18

 

Q2 '18

 

Q3 '18

 

Q4 '18

 

Q1 '19

 

Alternative Credential full course equivalent 
   enrollments

 

4,079

 

6,751

 

6,002

 

8,222

 

8,937

 

9,041

 

9,128

 
                               

Alternative Credential average revenue 
   per full course equivalent enrollment*

 

$

1,232

 

$

1,777

 

$

1,954

 

$

1,972

 

$

1,930

 

$

2,015

 

$

1,979

 
                                             
         

*

The calculation of alternative credential average revenue per full course equivalent enrollment includes $0.7 million of
revenue that was excluded from the results of operations in the third quarter of 2017, due to an adjustment recorded as part of
the valuation of GetSmarter.

 

 

 

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SOURCE 2U, Inc.