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Q1-10 Call: Naukri Expects A Tough Q2

During the Info Edge earnings conference call, CEO & MD Sanjeev Bikhchandani said that the company expects a challenging second quarter for the company, but with an improvement in hiring activity, might see an improvement in the third quarter of the 2009-10 fiscal. Hiring had bottomed out in December, and has been low since, but indications are that hiring has picked up June. If hiring picks up in the next few months, revenue will follow in the quarter that follows. The company was unable to give a guidance for Q2 growth, saying that it could be negative. "We don't expect great savings in costs in Q2, and if revenue does not improve, margins will be under pressure," Bikhchandani said. Note: numbers mentioned below are YoY, unless specified otherwise Recruitment Business: Margin & Pricing Pressures Margins Recruitment accounted for around 84 percent of operating topline. EBITDA margins for the recruitment vertical (Naukri and Quadrangle) were 39.07 percent, versus 43.76 percent in Q1 last year. For Naukri.com, the EBITDA margin moved down to 41.8 percent from 47.13 percent a year ago. The company said these numbers are internal numbers, and have not been audited or reviewed: Naukri Recruitment Solutions topline declined 21.4 percent, Naukri Candidate Services declined 1.6 percent, while Quadrangle declined 36 percent. Note that at an average, Naukri Recruitment solutions accounts for 90 percent. Pricing Pressures The recruitment business is facing pricing pressure, and customers are buying some of the cheaper solutions. COO Hitesh Oberoi said that to begin with, there…

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Founder @ MediaNama. TED Fellow. Asia21 Fellow @ Asia Society. Co-founder SaveTheInternet.in and Internet Freedom Foundation. Advisory board @ CyberBRICS

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