Snapchat parent Snap Inc's expansion efforts in India are helping the company grow its base in new markets, CEO Evan Spiegel has said.
"Our expansion efforts in India continue to prove successful, and we are using our learnings to inform how we approach community growth in new geographies," Spiegel said during the company's earnings conference call on February 3.
Snap Inc's posted its first-ever quarterly net profit of $22.6 million in Q4 2021, while revenue increased 42 percent year-on-year (YoY) to $1.3 billion.
For the full 2021 year, Snap Inc nearly halved its net loss to $488 million from $944.8 million in 2020 while revenue climbed by 64 percent YoY to $4.1 billion from $2.5 billion in 2020.
Spiegel said while North America and Europe represented company’s largest monetisation opportunities in the near and medium term, "rest of the world" would provide the opportunity for the largest community growth.
"We have made a concerted effort over the past year to organise our team and make investments in our products to realise these monetisation and community growth opportunities" Spiegel said.
Snap Inc’s daily active user base grew by 20 percent year-on-year to 319 million for Q4 2021. Its daily active user base has expanded by 20 percent or more for five consecutive quarters.
In terms of geographies, North America has 97 million daily active users, Europe 82 million, with the remaining 140 million users in the “rest of the world”.
While Snap Inc doesn't provide a country-wise split of its user base, India has risen to be a major growth market for the firm in recent quarters.
In October, Snap Inc had announced that it had reached a milestone of 100 million monthly active Snapchat users in the country.
“We have made significant investments to localise the Snapchat experience for the Indian community. We have added culturally relevant content, developed highly active and creative local creator communities, and invested in local products, marketing initiatives, and language support,” Spiegel said in October last year.
The company has also struck partnerships with a range of firms including e-commerce marketplaces like Flipkart, food delivery services like Zomato, direct-to-consumer brands like Sugar Cosmetics & MyGlamm, television channels like Sony Entertainment Television and Zee TV, Android device makers, and game developers like Moonfrog Labs to accelerate its growth in the country.
Augmented reality push
Snap Inc has also made a big augmented reality (AR) push by offering various tools and services to help businesses, creators and developers create engaging AR-driven experiences.
"Our AR products and services are driving major impact at scale today as Snapchatters use our services to shop, play, learn, explore and entertain themselves. Over 200 million people engage with augmented reality on Snapchat every day, and our community now plays with AR Lenses an average of more than six billion times per day" Spiegel said during the earnings call.
Snap Inc chief business officer Jeremi Gorman said augmented reality represented one of its "most exciting long term revenue opportunities" and noted that several advertisers had increased investments into AR advertising in Q4 2021.
Spiegel said there were now over 250,000 lens creators from more than 200 countries and territories who used the company’s Lens Studio software to build AR experiences.
"They have made more than 2.5 million lenses that have been viewed by Snapchatters now more than 3.5 trillion times, and over 300 creators have each reached more than a billion views of their lenses," he said.
Spiegel said 2022 would be a significant investment year for the company due to the "enormity of the opportunity in front of us, both in terms of the Snapchat application as well as our augmented reality platform".
The company said its advertising business bounced back from the effects of Apple Inc's privacy changes faster than it expected, and shares of the company skyrocketed 50 percent as it provided a first quarter outlook that surpassed analyst estimates, news agency Reuters reported.
Snap forecast first-quarter revenue between $1.03 billion to $1.08 billion, and daily active users to be between 328 million to 330 million. The guidance for both metrics surpassed analyst estimates, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.