TiVo ( TIVO), a provider of digital video recorder technology, said it narrowed its net loss in the fourth quarter as subscriptions nearly tripled.

Alviso, Calif.-based TiVo said it lost $12.4 million, or 18 cents a share, in the fourth quarter, an improvement from last year's net loss of $32.5 million, or 56 cents a share. Excluding noncash items, TiVo's net loss for the quarter was $7.9 million, or 12 cents a share, compared to a loss of $14.7 million, or 25 cents a share, in the same period a year ago. Analysts had been forecasting a loss of 18 cents a share in the quarter.

The shares were up 63 cents, or 5.5%, from their 4 p.m. EST close in after-hours trading, recently changing hands for $12.09.

Sales rose 85% to $42.6 million, compared with $23 million in the same period last year. The company said it added 330,000 net new subscriptions in the quarter, almost three times as many as in the fourth quarter of the previous year.

Looking ahead, TiVo said it expects to add 180,000 to 200,000 net subscribers in the first quarter, ending the period with about 1.5 million subscriptions. The firm expects an operating loss of $13 million to $15 million in the quarter.

For the full year, the company said it expects to add between 1.5 million and 1.6 million subscriptions this year, from a prior expectation of 1 million to 1.2 million. The firm increased guidance for service and technology revenue to a range of $100 million to $115 million.

"In view of these record results, acceleration in the market and the strongest cash balance we've had in three years, we believe the time is right to take advantage of the exciting growth opportunities that lie ahead of us," said Mike Ramsay, TiVo's Chairman and Chief Executive. "We are investing in sub acquisition to significantly build subscription and revenue growth, and to drive sustainable profitability by the end of fiscal year 2006."

As a result of a $50 million investment in subscription acquisition this year, TiVo said it expects to post an operating loss of between $75 million and $90 million in fiscal 2005.

If you liked this article you might like

Coming Week: Earnings Flood

Coming Week: Earnings Flood

Don't Write Off Inflation Threat

Don't Write Off Inflation Threat

No Quick Fix for Trade Gap

No Quick Fix for Trade Gap

Merrill's Doll Sees Stocks 'Muddling Through'

Merrill's Doll Sees Stocks 'Muddling Through'

Downhill From Profit Peak

Downhill From Profit Peak