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TiVo narrows quarterly loss

March 08, 2007|From Bloomberg News

TiVo Inc., the maker of digital video recorders, reported a narrower fiscal fourth-quarter loss Wednesday as the company attracted new subscribers.

The net loss shrank to $18.7 million, or 19 cents a share, in the quarter ended Jan. 31 from $21.1 million, or 25 cents, a year earlier, the Alviso, Calif.-based company said. Sales rose 29% to $77.6 million, with revenue from subscriptions and software beating analysts' estimates.

TiVo boosted so-called owned subscribers by 16%, countering a decline in users signed up through DirecTV Group Inc. Chief Executive Tom Rogers has sought alliances with cable operators such as Comcast Corp. and companies including Amazon.com Inc. and EarthLink Inc. as DirecTV, the largest U.S. satellite television service, phases out TiVo.

"We don't believe either will serve as huge catalysts," Todd Mitchell, an analyst at Kaufman Bros. in New York, said of the Amazon and EarthLink tie-ins. Comcast's commitment to TiVo services is unclear, Mitchell said.

TiVo shares rose 16 cents to $6.30 in extended trading after closing up 20 cents at $6.14.

Subscriber and technology revenue rose 22% to $57.4 million, exceeding the $56.5-million average of analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg.

"We increased our monthly subscription fees, and overall they're paying higher fees than a year ago," Rogers said.

The company also paid out fewer rebates on equipment purchases, he said.

TiVo finished the quarter with 4.44 million subscribers, little changed from a year earlier, while owned subscriptions increased 16% to 1.73 million from the year-earlier period.

This quarter, the company said, it could break even or post a loss of as much as $4 million on service and technology sales of $57 million to $58 million. Analysts expect a loss of 4 cents a share on sales of $58 million.

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