The biggest Internet marketing company, DoubleClick Inc., said Tuesday that its third-quarter loss narrowed 40% after the sale of its money-losing European unit. Sales during the quarter were down 19%, reflecting the continuing slump in online advertising.
The New York-based company reported a loss of $62 million, or 46 cents a share, for the three months ended Sept. 30, compared with a loss of $103.5 million, or 77 cents a share, a year earlier. When DoubleClick announced last year that it would sell its European Media operation, executives said 70% of the company's losses came from the unit.
DoubleClick, which was founded in 1996 and became a pioneer in Web site advertising sales, now focuses on market research and e-mail advertising campaigns.
Revenue for the quarter was $74.6 million, down nearly 20% from $92.7 million in the same period last year.
Its shares rose 7 cents Tuesday to $6.05 on Nasdaq before the results were announced. It dipped as low as $5.17 in after-hours trading.
The earnings were well below the 1-cent gain estimated by analysts surveyed by Thomson First Call.
Also Tuesday, DoubleClick announced it was teaming up with software maker Macromedia Inc. to develop methods to create, distribute and track online advertisements that feature animation and other enhancements.
San Francisco-based Macromedia created the widely used Flash online animation technology.