Genuity

(GENU)

said Thursday that its third-quarter revenue rose 70% on gains from its Internet access and Web hosting businesses as the Internet infrastructure company beat analysts' expectations despite a wider loss.

Genuity said its net loss widened to $228.9 million, or 24 cents a share on a pro forma basis, from $172.4 million, or 22 cents a share, in the comparable period of 1999. Analysts had expected a third-quarter loss of 27 cents a share, according to

First Call/Thomson Financial

.

Revenue climbed to $308.1 million from $181.5 million a year ago. Web hosting revenue increased 151% to $30.1 million from $12 million last year, mainly because the company won new business orders. Revenue from digital-subscriber-line high-speed Internet access rose to $17 million from $1 million.

Genuity, based in Burlington, Mass., said it is shifting its focus to higher-margin services, like managed security and virtual private networks, among other areas.

The company, which recorded a 58% increase in operating expenses in the third quarter, added that it is on track to hit its financial targets and meet Wall Street's consensus estimates for the rest of the year.

Genuity was up 38 cents, or 6%, at $6.56 in early trading Thursday.