Kakao Pay's Q1 net profit falls 68 pct due to rise in personnel expensesKakao Pay, the online payment unit of Korean tech giant Kakao, reported Monday that its first quarter net profit fell 68.4 percent on-year to 3.8 billion won ($3 million) due to an increase in personnel expenses.
The company shifted to an operating loss of 1.1 billion won in the January-March period from an operating profit of 10.8 billion won a year ago, according a regulatory filing. Sales rose 15.1 percent to 123.3 billion won.
Kakao Pay said its operating expenses rose 29.1 percent on-year to 124.4 billion won due to the increase in personnel-related expenditures from hiring more employees, wage hikes and annual bonuses.
Sales from its transaction service increased 42 percent to 94.3 billion won, but its financial service reported a loss in sales due to a slowdown of business of its brokerage subsidiary Kakao Pay Securities Corp.
Volume of transactions during the period rose 20 percent on-year to 27.2 trillion won.
The service’s accumulated users reached 37.88 million, with monthly active users tallied at 21.56 million. The average number of annual transactions per user climbed 42 percent to 98.9.
The accumulated cash balance managed by Kakao Pay surpassed 70 billion won, up 471 percent compared with 2018, the company said.