Facebook profit falls in advance of IPO

Facebook announced on Monday that its total revenue rose 45 percent year over year in the first quarter of 2012, but its profit fell 12 percent.

Facebook boosted revenue fromUS$731 million in the first quarter oflast year to $1.06 billion in the quarter that ended March 31. Its netincome fell from $233 million to $205 million, according to a Form S-1that the company filed to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commissionon Monday.

Perhaps more important to would-be stock buyers, the earnings per shareon Facebook’s existing, privately sold stock fell from $0.11 in thefirst quarter of 2011 to $0.09 in the quarter that just ended.

The company’s costs nearly doubled in the same year-over-yearcomparison, from $343 million in 2011 to $677 million in 2012,accounting for the decline in profit.

But the social network‘s user basecontinues to grow, surpassing 900million monthly active users in 2012. There are now 300 million photosuploaded to Facebook every day, according to the filing, highlightingone motive for Facebook’s acquisition of photo-sharing app Instagraminearly April.

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission required Facebook to filethe information as part of the company’s preparation to hold an initialpublic stock offering in the next couple of months.

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