Were these the 3 best results this earnings season?

It certainly has been an eventful earnings season with a number of ups and downs.

Three of the best results I have seen this month are summarised below. Here’s why they caught my eye:

A2 Milk Company Ltd (ASX: A2M)

Whilst earnings season isn’t quite finished, I feel confident saying that no result will be able to top what a2 Milk Company achieved this month. The fast-growing dairy company smashed expectations when it revealed half-year revenue growth of 70% to NZ$435 million and net profit after tax growth of 150% to NZ$98.5 million. A key driver of this growth was its China segment which recorded revenues of NZ$114 million, up 204% on the prior corresponding period. The company finished the period with a 5.4% share of the infant formula market in China based on consumption.

Appen Ltd (ASX: APX)

On February 21 this machine learning and artificial intelligence dataset provider released its full-year results for FY 2017 and blew the market away. Thanks to an impressively strong performance by its Content Relevance segment, Appen delivered a 50% increase in full-year revenue and 62% lift in earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA). Whilst this was strong, management’s guidance for FY 2018 was even stronger. Management expects its growth to accelerate next year and has provided EBITDA guidance of between $50 million and $55 million. This represents year-on-year growth of 77.9% to 96%.

Nextdc Ltd (ASX: NXT)

Another highlight in my opinion was the half-year result of this leading data centre operator. Thanks to increasing demand for its data services, NEXTDC posted underlying EBITDA of $33.6 million on revenues of $77.5 million. This was a 41% and 32% increase, respectively, on the prior corresponding period. Pleasingly, the strong first-half led management to upgrade its full-year guidance. It now expects revenue between $152 million and $158 million, compared to previous guidance of $146 million to $154 million. Underlying EBITDA is expected to be between $58 million and $62 million, compared to previous guidance of $56 million to $61 million. Unsurprisingly, the market responded positively to this and its shares surged higher.

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Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro owns shares of NEXTDC Limited. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of A2 Milk and Appen Ltd. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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