知乎-W(02390.HK):职业培训强劲增长 AI赋能社区升级

Zhihu-W (02390.HK): Strong growth in vocational training, AI empowers community upgrading

國泰君安 ·  08/26/2023

Introduction to this report:

The company's performance in the second quarter was in line with expectations, strong growth in vocational training, narrowing losses, and actively embracing AI to promote community upgrading.


Maintain the “increase in holdings” rating and maintain the target price of HK$29.36. The company's performance for the second quarter was in line with expectations, “social+education” drove losses to continue to narrow, and fully embraced AI to explore community upgrades.

Considering the progress of marketing service recovery, vocational training development, and cost control, we adjusted the adjusted net profit from 2023 to 2025 to -7.3/-0.4/350 million yuan (previous value was -8.1/-28/70 million yuan, same below), PS 1.0X/0.8X/0.7X, and maintained the “increase in maintenance” rating.

Revenue grew steadily, gross margin improved, and losses continued to narrow. The company achieved revenue of 1,044 million yuan, +25% year-on-year, thanks to rapid growth in paid members' steady vocational training; gross profit of 562 million yuan, +41%, gross profit margin 54%, year-on-year +6pct, +2pct. Under effective cost control, gross margin improved significantly; adjusted net profit -222 million yuan, narrowed by 50% year-on-year, adjusted net interest rate -21%, year-on-year +32pct. Under improved gross margin and cost control, the company will continue to focus on narrowing losses and seeking losses in the future. Achieve healthy growth.

The number of MAU members is stable at a new high, and it is embracing AI to promote community upgrading. The company's 2Q23 average MAU was 109 million people, +3% year on year, +7% month on month, and users continued to grow and hit a new high; the average number of monthly subscribers was 14.0 million, +65.3% year on year. The number of members fell from month to month but remained high. Continued richness in content is expected to drive the number of members to continue to grow. Furthermore, the closed beta results of the Zhihu Zhihaitu AI model have improved markedly. At the same time, it has been deeply applied in scenarios such as creation, recommendation, search, review, education, etc., and the company actively embraces AI to promote comprehensive community upgrading.

Steady marketing services for members are under pressure, and vocational education is growing strongly. Company 2Q23 achieved paid membership revenue of 449 million yuan, +66% year on year. Member revenue continued to grow steadily. The average number of monthly paid members and member ARPPU both achieved positive year-on-year growth; 2Q23 achieved marketing service revenue of 413 million yuan, -14% year-on-year, a year-on-year decline of -2pct. Marketing service revenue continued to be pressured, and improved service products focused on increasing profit margins; 2Q23 achieved vocational training revenue of 145 million yuan, +213% year-on-year. The education business structure was built and perfected, and internal and external vitality drove education. Revenue grew rapidly; 2Q23 achieved other revenue of 38 million yuan, -7% year-on-year.

Risk warning: Advertising recovery is falling short of expectations; demand for vocational training falls short of expectations; corporate cost control falls short of expectations.

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