CMGI Posts Strong Q1

Internet investment firm CMGI today reported earnings for its fiscal year 2000 first quarter that reflected a strong increase in revenue and a lower-than-expected net loss.

Revenue for the quarter ended Oct. 31, was $123.7 million, up 231% from the year-ago quarter. CMGI saw a net gain of $46.4 million on stock from NaviSite's initial public offering and $48.3 million on the sale of Yahoo common stock.

Including the effects of amortization, CMGI's net loss was $117 million or $1.08 per share, less than the $1.74 expected by analysts. Phil Benyola, research associate with Raymond James & Associates Inc., said he expected the wider loss per share because of CMGI's acquisition of AltaVista Co.

Along with AltaVista, CMGI made several other acquisitions during the first quarter, including Engage and its subsidiaries I/PRO and AdKnowledge; Adsmart; AdForce; and Flycast.

Adding to its arsenal of interactive marketing and advertising properties, the Andover, Mass., firm also announced it will acquire, an outsourcer for permission E-mail marketing technology and services for $500 million in stock.

The deal, which is expected to close in March, is subject to regulatory approval from shareholders and will result in the marketing site becoming a majority-owned operating company of CMGI.

Benyola says his firm previously identified a permission-based marketing site as the only component that CMGI was missing. "The acquisition will enable CMGI to set up permission-based E-mail campaigns and offer direct marketing programs to its customers," he says. was founded in 1995 as WebPromote. It has more than 100 employees and 8 million permission-based E-mail subscribers. Through its YesMail Network, it provides direct marketing E-mail campaigns, along with customer acquisition services, and customer relationship management.

The company also announced a 2-for-1 stock split available to shareholders as of Dec. 28.

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