24/7 Media Reports $780M Loss for 2000

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In a conference call with analysts yesterday that ended abruptly and eliminated the analysts' opportunity to ask questions, 24/7 Media Inc. said its net loss for 2000 rose substantially to $779.9 million.


That translates into a loss of $23.38 per share, from a loss of $39 million, or a loss of $1.96 per share in 1999.


For the fourth quarter, its net loss was $677.1 million, or a loss of $15.96 per share, up from a loss of $12.9 million, or a loss of 58 cents per share a year earlier.


However, 24/7 Media said total revenue for 2000 more than doubled to $185.1 million. Revenue for the fourth quarter improved 106 percent to $38.6 million. It said earlier this year that it expected total revenue to be $43 million to $45 million, down from $49 million.


The company said earlier this year that for the fourth quarter that ended Dec. 31, earnings per share were expected to be a loss of between 46 cents and 49 cents, up from the previously expected loss of 39 cents to 44 cents per share. Even excluding one-time charges and extraordinary items, the company's net loss per share for the quarter was 75 cents, well above its earlier projection.


The ad network had originally planned to release its earnings on Feb. 26, but postponed its announcement until yesterday to "evaluate strategic alternatives" to raising cash. It noted in the conference call that it had secured $50 million in investments, but would not say from whom.


Revenues from its e-mail business fell to $4.1 million in the fourth quarter from $5.4 million in the same quarter a year earlier. For 2000, 24/7 Media's e-mail revenue rose to $29.2 million, up from $8.8 million in 1999. Mail revenue included results from the company's list management and brokerage services businesses.


It said revenues for its e-mail business should remain in the $3 million to $5 million range for the first and second quarters of 2001.


24/7 Media said that its Exactis division delivered 1.8 billion e-mail messages in the fourth quarter and 5 billion messages for the year. It has the capacity to deliver 75 million e-mail messages per day. It said it has 30 million names under management and added 5 million names in the fourth quarter.


The company said that it had $28.9 million in cash and equivalents on hand as of Dec. 31, well short of analysts' expected $43 million.


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