(Bloomberg) — Shopify Inc. continued its winning streak, beating analysts’ revenue estimates for the tenth quarter in a row and boosting its forecast for the year. But the company was still under the shadow of a report by a renowned shortseller that questioned its sustainability.
The Canadian e-commerce platform had $171.5 million in sales in the quarter ending Sept. 30, topping the average analyst projection of $166.5 million. Shopify also reported adjusted earnings per share of 5 cents, beating estimates for a loss of 2 cents and achieving operating profitability earlier than the company had forecast.
The third-quarter earnings report Tuesday came after an attack by short-selling firm Citron Research that called the company a “get-rich-quick” scheme and said Shopify’s growth is an illusion because so many of its users leave the platform each month. At some point, the company will run out of new users to sign-up and growth will end abruptly, Citron founder Andrew Left argued. Shopify Chief Executive Officer Tobi Lutke has called Left a “troll” and Wall Street analysts have so far almost unanimously stood with the company, but Shopify still hasn’t released new numbers to shore up its argument that growth is sustainable.
Shopify, based in Ottawa, has been the best performing stock on Canada’s benchmark equity index this year, gaining 155 percent. The shares were volatile in early trading, initially dropping almost 5 percent before

 

(Bloomberg) — Shopify Inc. Chief Executive Officer Tobi Lutke called a short seller that targeted his company a “troll,” in his first public response since being targeted by Andrew Left’s Citron Research last week.
Left, who said he had taken a short position in the stock, published a report on Oct. 4 questioning the sustainability of the Canadian e-commerce company’s growth rate and calling its marketing tactics illegal. Though Wall Street analysts overwhelmingly stood by Shopify and rejected Left’s claims, the company’s shares fell 12 percent, its biggest one-day decline since listing in May 2015.
See also: Shopify Tumbles as Citron Calls Company ‘Get-Rich-Quick Scheme’
“Lots of people want me to address the short-selling troll that’s targeting,” Shopify, Lutke tweeted Tuesday. “Looking forward to next earnings calls to do so.”
Shopify helps small merchants set up online stores. Citron’s report alleges the vast majority of them are recruited by promoters promising the website is an easy way to make money without doing much work, and that eventually the company’s growth will crumble when these merchants fail.
Left immediately responded to Lutke calling him a troll when contacted by Bloomberg, saying it “shows his immaturity as a CEO.”
“The irony of an outfit like Citron accusing any business of being a get-rich-quick scheme should not be lost on anyone,” Lutke added.

 

(Bloomberg) — Shopify Inc., the rising Canadian e-commerce platform dominated by small business owners, is teaming up with EBay Inc. to allow its merchants to sell directly through the online marketplace.
The move adds another outlet for Shopify’s roughly 400,000 users, though the EBay integration will be available initially only for U.S. customers selling in U.S. dollars, Shopify said in a statement. When Shopify signed a similar deal with Amazon.com Inc. in 2015, its stock surged as investors predicted a boost to revenue.
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The Ottawa-based company’s strategy has been to integrate with as many online channels as possible, letting its customers diversify away from their personal websites and sell on Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook, Buzzfeed, and Amazon. Shopify also provides payment tools, shipping and small loans to help its users build their businesses.
Shopify is a growing player in the battle for turf in the rapidly growing world of online shopping. Instead of building a centralized marketplace like Amazon and EBay, it provides tools for independent merchants, both large and small, to sell online in various ways. It also provides point of sale software and hardware for physical stores, similar to Square Inc. One of the company’s key rivals, Bigcommerce Inc., already lets its customers integrate with EBay.
Customers have been asking for Shopify to integrate with EBay for a while, said Satish Kanwar,

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