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Novell Posts $92 Million Loss

The company takes charges on real estate and venture investments.
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Networking software maker



reported a wide fourth-quarter loss after the close Thursday, as the company took charges to write down real estate assets and venture investments.

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The Provo, Utah-based company posted a loss of $91.7 million, or 25 cents a share, compared with a year-ago loss of $94.5 million, or 26 cents a share. Excluding charges, Novell said it earned $15 million, or 4 cents a share, a penny ahead of year-ago results. Analysts were expecting the company to earn 3 cents a share according to research firm Thomson Financial/First Call. Total revenue for the quarter dropped to $300 million from $316 million.

Looking forward, the company expects 5% year-over-year revenue growth in the first quarter of fiscal 2003. Novell said it will likely post first-quarter earnings that are slightly above break-even with a 6% decline in revenue on a sequential basis.

The shares were recently down 13 cents, or 3.4%, at $3.75 on Instinet. The stock is trading up more than 100% since hitting a new 52-week low of $1.57 back on Aug. 14 of this year.