today reported an operating loss of 1 cent a share for the third quarter, cutting in half its losses from the previous year's quarter and hitting the expected earnings mark targeted by Wall Street analysts.
Following the announcement, made after the stock market closed, Excite@Home traded up more than 1 point in after-hours trading. The stock ended regular
trading up 2 1/16 at 40 5/8.
The Web portal and broadband access provider posted a net operating loss of $4 million compared to a loss of $8 million, or 2 cents a share, in the comparable 1998 quarter. A consensus of Wall Street analysts polled by
First Call/Thomson Financial
called for the largest high-speed Internet provider in the U.S. to lose 1 cent a share this quarter.
Excite@Home reported revenues of $113 million for the quarter, a 95% increase compared to the 1998 third-quarter revenues of $58 million. The company saw cable modem subscribers increase by 35% over the company's third quarter, and a fourfold increase above the 210,000 subscribers at this time last year, the company said.
"Beneath our numbers this quarter were significant improvements to our operational metrics, and the growing success of marketing programs that drove broadband subscriber growth," George Bell, president of Excite@Home, said in a statement.
Tom Jermoluk, Excite@Home's chairman and chief executive, added that the Redwood City, Calif.-based company still expects to reach many of the year-end goals it targeted, such as posting its first-ever quarter of operating profits and its 1 millionth broadband customer.
Excite has been plagued with troubling news in recent months. The company's stock has plunged since April, losing more than half of its worth. Last week, a lawsuit was filed by shareholders that said
, which controls more than 50% of Excite@Home's voting stake, is intentionally interfering with Excite@Home's operations to gain a competitive advantage. The case remains in the very early stages.
In other company news, Excite today announced it plans to offer broadband access through partnerships with
, which expands Excite@Home's retail presence.