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Sun Microsystems Returns to Profitability

Earnings: The server maker's results meet expectations. EBay posts record net income.

July 19, 2002|From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Sun Microsystems Inc., maker of servers that run Web sites and corporate networks, returned to modest profitability in its latest quarter after a year of losses.

But the firm said it expects to post a small loss in the current quarter.

For the quarter ended June 30, Santa Clara, Calif.-based Sun earned $20 million, or 1 cent a share, contrasted with a loss of $88 million, or 3 cents, in the same period a year earlier.

Revenue was $3.4 billion, down 17% from a year earlier. The results met analyst expectations.

The company's outlook didn't cheer investors: Sun shares, up 12 cents to $5.80 in regular Nasdaq trading, fell to $4.90 in after-hours trading, following a warning from Sun's chief financial officer, Steve McGowan, that sales are "very difficult."

For its full fiscal 2002, Sun reported sales of $12.5 billion, down 32%. The firm posted a loss of $628 million, or 19 cents a share, contrasted with a $927-million profit, or 27 cents, in 2001.

In other earnings Thursday:

* EBay Inc. continued to be a bright spot in the troubled e-commerce sector, announcing record net income of $54.3 million, or 19 cents a share, for the second quarter, up 121% from the same period last year.

Revenue for the online auctioneer rose 47% to $266.3 million from $180.9 million a year earlier. San Jose-based EBay has been profitable every quarter since going public in September 1998.

EBay Chief Executive Meg Whitman said in a conference call to analysts that next week the company would introduce its first non-auction, fixed-price option for sellers.

* Broadcom Corp., the largest maker of chips for cable modems, said revenue grew and losses narrowed in the second quarter as the company expanded its offerings to weather a steep downturn in technology spending.

Including costs related to acquisitions and other items, the Irvine company lost $129.4 million, or 49 cents a share, compared with $436.4 million, or $1.73, in the year-earlier period.

Excluding those charges, Broadcom's loss narrowed to $16.8 million, or 6 cents a share, from $41.1 million, or 16 cents, a year earlier. Sales rose 22% to $258.2 million.

* Gateway Inc., the No. 3 U.S. maker of personal computers, lost $61.2 million in the second quarter, or 19 cents a share, compared with $20.8 million, or 6 cents, a year earlier. Analysts had predicted a 17-cent loss. Sales fell 33% to $1 billion.

* Communications chip maker Vitesse Semiconductor Corp. said its net loss widened to $735.9 million, or $3.71 a share, including $695.5 million in charges stemming from the write-down of assets and other one-time items. The firm had a net loss of $69.6 million, or 38 cents a share, a year ago.

Excluding charges, Vitesse posted a $20.6-million loss, or 10 cents a share, compared with $11.9 million, or 6 cents, a year earlier. Sales fell 28% to $43 million.

* Aliso Viejo-based computer storage networking company QLogic Corp. posted a profit of $23.1 million, or 24 cents a share, in its fiscal first quarter, up from $19.2 million, or 20 cents a share, a year earlier.

Revenue for the quarter ended June 30 rose 9% to $100.8 million.

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