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Intuit grows QuickBooks subscribers but momentum slows

By Jenny Ruth

May 24 (BusinessDesk) - United States-based Intuit increased its online QuickBooks subscriptions to more than 4.2 million at the end of April, up 32 percent compared with the same quarter last year.

That’s up from 3.9 million subscribers at Jan. 31.

However, the accounting software company’s momentum is slowing somewhat; US customers rose 25 percent to more than 3.1 million in Intuit's fiscal third quarter compared with the year-earlier quarter, and from 2.9 million at Jan. 31 when growth was 32 percent.

Customer numbers outside the US rose 55 percent to more than 1.1 million from the year-earlier quarter and from 980,000 at Jan. 31. The 55 percent pace of growth was little changed from the second quarter.

“We continue to see momentum in our small business and self-employed group, driven by online ecosystem revenue growth,” chief executive Sasan Goodarzi said in a statement.

“We’re making progress in solving key customer pain points and becoming the centre of small business growth around the globe,” Goodarzi said.

New Zealand-headquartered but ASX-listed Xero is challenging Intuit, the incumbent US accounting software provider, but still has a fraction of its customers.

Xero reported earlier this month that it had 195,000 US subscribers at March 31, up 48 percent from 132,000 a year earlier.

Xero is still the largest player outside the US with 1.6 million customers at March 31.

Much of QuickBooks’ growth is coming from targeting the self-employed whose subscriber numbers rose to 970,000 from 680,000 a year earlier.

About 440,000 of those self-employed subscribers were already customers of Intuit’s TurboTax product.

Intuit is facing legal claims that its TurboTax unit deceived people eligible for free tax filing, including those earning less than US$66,000 a year, into paying for its services.

Goodarzi said Intuit “had a great tax season” and produced “our most robust free offering yet and made significant progress in our effort to transform the assisted category.”


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