The microblogging website Twitter has disclosed financial details of its business for the first time. This comes ahead of an initial public offering that it hopes will raise a billion dollars.
Documents filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission on Thursday showed that while Twitter was growing rapidly in terms of both users and revenue, it still was not showing a profit.
According to the figures filed, Twitter had 218 million active users as of June 30, 2013, up 44 percent from one year earlier. This compares to 240 million for Linkedin and is just a fraction of the almost 1.2 billion users Facebook claims to have.
Twitter said its revenue had almost tripled in 2012 to $316.9 million (232.5 euros) and that it had generated revenue of $253.6 million in the first half of 2013.
At the same time though, the company has been losing money since at least 2010, which is as far back as the financial statements included in the filing went.
It also continues to make losses, with the documents showing that it had lost almost $80 million in 2012 and $69.3 million in the first six months of this year.
Despite this fact, the IPO is expected to be the largest since that of Facebook in 2012 and Twitter is hoping to raise around $1 billion (73.4 million euros).
Some financial analysts have put the value of the company, which gives users 140 characters to get their point across, as high as $15 billion. This, like its user figures, is a fraction of that of Facebook when it was floated.
The company did not say when it planned to begin trading, saying only that this would be "soon as practicable." It also didn't say whether it planned to trade on the New York Stock Exchange or the NASDAQ.
The IPO is being managed by Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, JPMorgan, BofA Merril Lynch, Allen & Co, Deutsche Bank Securities and Code Advisors.
pfd/hc (Reuters, AFP)