EBITDA vs. Net Income: Decoding Profitability Metrics

January 2, 2024

EBITDA vs. Net Income: Decoding Profitability Metrics

EBITDA vs. Net Income: Decoding Profitability Metrics

In the intricate landscape of financial analysis, two crucial metrics—EBITDA (Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation, and Amortization) and Net Income—stand out, each providing unique insights into a company's profitability. Let's delve into the distinctions between EBITDA and Net Income, understanding their roles and significance in evaluating financial performance.

What is Net Income?

Net Income, also known as Profit After Tax (PAT), is a key metric that reflects a company's profitability after deducting all expenses, including taxes and interest. It provides a comprehensive view of the company's overall financial health by considering all operational and non-operational costs.

Formula for Net Income:

Net Income = Revenue − Operating Expenses −Taxes − Interests
  • Revenue is the total income received by a business from its operations. In other words, the total amount of money earned through sales of goods and services is called revenue.
  • Expenses are costs incurred by a business in order to provide goods or services to customers. Examples include salaries paid to employees, rent paid for office space, and materials used in the production of goods or when providing services.
  • Taxes are mandatory financial obligations imposed by governmental entities on businesses and individuals.
  • Interests refer to the costs incurred when borrowing money or capital. 

What is EBITDA?

EBITDA serves as an indicator of a company's ability to generate profit, acting as a proxy for its earning potential. This metric eliminates the cost of debt capital, tax effects, and non-cash expenses like depreciation and amortization, offering a view of operational performance before considering the capital structure.

Formula for EBITDA:

EBITDA = Operating Income + Depreciation + Amortization
  • Operating Income (OI) represents a company's profit after subtracting operating expenses.
  • Depreciation is the process of deducting the cost of an asset over its useful life.
  • Amortization is the process of deducting the cost of an intangible asset over their estimated useful life.

Example of Net Income and EBITDA Calculation

Consider the following example of hypothetical company ABCD:

Net Income is also called the Bottom-line, as it is the last line of the P&L and includes all the expenses no matter if they are operational or from financing.

Notice that if you were to calculate the EBITDA with the alternative formula of:

EBITDA = Net Income + Taxes + Interest Expenses + Depreciation + Amortization

The result would be exactly the same, $350,000.

Comparing Net Income and EBITDA:

As the previous example showed, EBITDA offers a broad view of operational profitability by excluding interest, taxes, and non-cash items. In contrast, Net Income provides a comprehensive assessment, considering all expenses, including interest, taxes, and operational costs, offering a holistic view of a company's financial health.The following table shows a comparison of both metrics:


In the realm of financial analysis EBITDA, and Net Income serve as indispensable tools, each offering unique perspectives on a company's performance. While EBITDA provides a broader operational view, Net Income unveils the comprehensive financial picture. The synergy of these metrics enables a more nuanced evaluation of a company's fiscal prowess, guiding investors and stakeholders in making informed decisions.

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