In the battle for professional social networks, Germany’s XING has been steadily gaining ground as a competitor to LinkedIn, and it’s financial results today prove that the company knows how to monetize their users. XING announced that for the first half of 2010, total revenues rose 20% over last year’s â‚¬21.54 million to â‚¬25.86 million this year. The majority of revenue comes from XING’s paying Premium Members but there has been growth in their recruiting services and their on-site advertising as well.
Overall, XING’s global membership is at 9.63 million users, which is behind competitors Viadeo at 30 million and LinkedIn at 70 million users. That said, the site has a niche market and targets German speaking countries very strongly. While the language isn’t necessarily as important as the fun features on personal social networks, language and culture is key on a professional business social network, and XING users are unlikely to simply jump ship to LinkedIn based on ideas like app stores.
Stefan Gross-Selbeck, CEO at XING AG, said that “We were able to present excellent figures for the first half of 2010. From an operative perspective, the second quarter was the most successful in the company’s history with our strategy of tapping into new sources of income already bearing fruit. The increased growth we generated in our new income channels – E-Recruiting and Advertising – played a major part in the positive figures for the first half of 2010 along with our efforts to focus even more on the customer and develop our core features to improve customer benefit. Within the scope of this, we made improvements to our Premium Membership product and, in particular, to our Basic Membership. This had a direct impact on our membership figures with Q2 returning the highest growth levels achieved in the last 15 months.” To quantify this, 460,000 people signed up to XING as new members in Q2 with global membership for H1/2010 rising by 880,000 to 9.63 million.
XING’s growth in Germany has been swift, with XING at 4.07 million users. They’ve also seen big growth in Turkey, rocketing 64% to 900,000 and Spain increasing by 40% to 1.42 million users. Overall premium subscription numbers are 718,000 users, with 31,000 new premium users in the first 6 months of 2010 so far.