Snap Stems the Flood of Users Leaving Its App

SAN FRANCISCO — Snap lost millions of users last year after an unpopular redesign of Snapchat, its ephemeral-messaging app. Now that exodus appears to be slowing.

The company said on Tuesday that it had stanched the flow of people leaving its platform. Snap’s daily active users totaled 186 million in the fourth quarter, the same as the previous quarter and down just one million compared with a year earlier, after two consecutive quarters of falling user numbers. In addition, Snap’s revenue rose 36 percent, while its net loss narrowed.

“Change is always difficult and this past year was no exception,” Evan Spiegel, Snap’s chief executive, said in prepared remarks about the company’s earnings.

The financial report follows months of turbulence for Snap, which has also endured executive turnover and other challenges.

Snap said in January that its chief financial officer, Tim Stone, would leave, less than a year after he was hired last May. His was one in a wave of departures. Imran Khan, Snap’s chief strategy officer, stepped down in September. That same month, the company lost Nick Bell, its vice president for content. Its head of hardware, Sahil Sharma, exited in December.

In addition, Snap is under scrutiny from the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Justice Department. The company said late last year that it had responded to subpoenas from those agencies regarding disclosures Snap made ahead of its 2017 initial public offering.

Snap has faced numerous roadblocks since going public. While Snapchat has been wildly popular with young people, it has run into competition from Facebook, including its core social network and its other apps, such as Instagram and WhatsApp.

Then last year, Snap redesigned its app, effectively separating social and media into two sections. That prompted a user revolt, including from celebrities like Kylie Jenner. A long-awaited update to Snapchat’s Android app has also yet to be fully rolled out.

In contrast, Facebook announced during its earnings call last week that Instagram had 500 million daily active users of Stories, a feature that lets people share photos and videos that have a life span of 24 hours. Snapchat had pioneered the Stories feature.

“Snap seems to be flatlining or declining while Instagram is literally going vertical,” said Richard Greenfield, an analyst at BTIG Research.

In his remarks, Mr. Spiegel said Snapchat users on Apple devices were starting to return to the platform and daily active use had increased among those people. Snapchat’s Android app update is also gradually being introduced to a small set of users, allowing them to open the app 20 percent faster, he said.

Snap’s revenue was $390 million in its fourth quarter, up from $286 million a year earlier. Net loss was $192 million, compared with a loss of $350 million a year ago.