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Snowflake Stock Slides Despite Strong Revenue: Here’s Why

Snowflake Inc. (SNOW) saw its stock fall 5.3% to $154.58 on Thursday, despite reporting better-than-expected revenue for the first quarter. 

The drop comes amid concerns over the company’s valuation and recent comments from management that have spooked investors.

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Strong Financial Performance
Snowflake, a leader in data storage and analytics, reported impressive financial results for its first quarter ending April 30. The company posted adjusted earnings per share (EPS) of $0.14 on revenue of $828.7 million, beating analysts' revenue expectations of $787 million, according to FactSet. However, the EPS fell short of the projected $0.18 per share.

The company's product revenue—a key performance metric—grew 34% year over year to $789.6 million, surpassing its guidance of $745-$750 million. Snowflake’s total revenue increased by 32.9% from the same period last year. Additionally, the number of customers with trailing-12-month product revenue greater than $1 million rose to 485, up from 461 in the previous quarter.

Concerns Over Growth and Valuation
Despite these strong numbers, investors are wary of Snowflake's hefty valuation and growth prospects. The stock is currently trading at over 150 times its expected per-share earnings for the next 12 months. Such a high valuation leaves Snowflake vulnerable to concerns about its growth trajectory, particularly in its product revenue.

Management’s comments during the earnings call added to these concerns. The company noted that growth moderated in April after a strong February and March, attributing this to normal business variability. UBS analyst Karl Keirstead suggested that the moderation might be due to several large customer migrations in February and March, leading to a temporary spike in usage that has since normalized.

AI Investments and Margins
Snowflake has been investing heavily in artificial intelligence (AI) to drive future growth. The company’s new CEO, Sridhar Ramaswamy, formerly of Google, is focused on advancing Snowflake’s AI capabilities. However, these investments have come at a cost. To support its AI initiatives, Snowflake has increased its spending on GPU chips, impacting its margins.

As a result, Snowflake lowered its fiscal year 2025 non-GAAP operating margin guidance to 3% from the previously projected 6%, and its adjusted free cash flow margin guidance to 26% from 29%. This margin outlook has contributed to the stock’s decline, as investors remain cautious about the company’s ability to balance growth with profitability.

Analyst Reactions
Analysts have mixed views on Snowflake’s prospects. UBS maintained a Neutral rating but raised its price target to $190 from $185, citing the company’s strong revenue performance. Oppenheimer analyst Ittai Kidron was more optimistic, keeping a Buy rating and a $220 price target, highlighting Snowflake’s technological advantage and potential for continued growth.

However, the market’s reaction suggests that investors are looking for more substantial evidence of growth acceleration, particularly from AI-driven demand. Snowflake’s cautious guidance and the moderation in consumption growth in April have tempered expectations.

Competitive Landscape
Snowflake’s competitors outperformed on Thursday. MongoDB (MDB) rose 4.1%, while Datadog (DDOG) gained 1.3%. MongoDB is set to report its earnings next week, which could provide further insights into the competitive dynamics in the cloud-software space.

Conclusion
Snowflake’s robust revenue growth and strong customer metrics underscore its leading position in the data storage and analytics market. However, the company’s high valuation and concerns over growth sustainability have led to a muted response from investors. As Snowflake continues to invest in AI and expand its capabilities, the focus will be on how effectively it can translate these investments into long-term profitability and sustained growth.


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