Jupiter Media Metrix May Go Broke in May: SEC Filing

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Jupiter Media Metrix Inc., one of the early pioneers of Internet research and analysis, has admitted it may run out of money by the middle of May.


The New York company said in its annual report filed April 1 with the Securities and Exchange Commission that it has only $7.5 million in cash and investments, plus $1.4 million in marketable securities.


"The [10-K annual report] is reflective of what we announced in our year-end earnings," said Susan Hickey, vice president of investor relations at Jupiter. "At the same time we continue to look for strategic alternatives for the company.


"We're engaged in a number of conversations [with suitors] with the intent of protecting our assets and keeping our brands, products, services and people in the marketplace," Hickey said.


To add salt to its wounds, the Nasdaq has threatened to delist Jupiter's JMXI stock by June if it does not meet the $1 minimum. The stock yesterday was trading at 14 cents, down 6.67 percent from the previous day's closing. Its 52-week high was $3.25.


Jupiter has incurred heavy losses since its inception in 1999 when Jupiter Communications merged with Media Metrix.


Jupiter in 2001 recorded losses of $519.2 million, including a $320 million charge related to a good will write-down. Revenue that year was $89.2 million. In 2000, Jupiter reported losses of $63.3 million on revenue of $77.8 million.


Investment bank Robertson Stephens has been retained to look for a buyer. Jupiter may either consider an outright sale or divest one or more of its four business units.


Jupiter's units include Jupiter Research and its European subsidiary, Internet traffic measurement division Media Metrix and online advertising measurement service AdRelevance.


An earlier attempt to sell the entire company failed this year. A planned $71.2 million merger with NetRatings Inc. was called off after the Federal Trade Commission said it would challenge the deal. Jupiter was not ready to contest the FTC in court.


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