CMGI's Engage jumps in first trading day

Engage Technologies, an Internet marketing company controlled by Web venture company CMGI, more than doubles in its first day of trading.

ANDOVER, Massachusetts--Engage Technologies, an Internet marketing company controlled by Web venture company CMGI, more than doubled in its first day of trading.

The Andover, Massachusetts-based company rose 26 points, or 173.33 percent, to 41 as about 14.9 million shares changed hands on the Nasdaq Stock Market. Earlier, the shares reached 47, giving the company a market value of $2.2 billion.

CMGI, an incubator of Internet-related businesses, owns about 82 percent of Engage following the initial sale. Engage operates a database that lets Web retailers and publishers tailor advertising, marketing, or content to individual customers. The company's technology analyzes a customer's Internet browsing habits, demographic characteristics, and geographic location.

"People have confidence in CMGI," said Lawrence York, manager of the $36 million Internet Fund, based in Lexington, Kentucky, which primarily invests in Internet stocks. "They see the synergies between the companies they're backing, and that's reflected in Engage's offering."

CMGI chairman David Wetherell is also chairman of Engage. Engage chief executive Paul Schaut, 39, was vice president of strategic partnering at Open Market, a provider of e-commerce software, before joining Engage.

The Engage Knowledge service provides real-time access to Engage's consumer database, and the Engage ProfileServer lets Web merchants and publishers create their own local databases profiling consumers who log in to their Web sites. Other services include AdManager, which automates the delivery of online advertising.

Engage has built a database of more than 30 million anonymous consumer profiles, according to its IPO filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Engage said it had sold products and services to 300 customers as of April 30, including CNET, Lycos, and Dell Computer. CNET is the publisher of News.com.

Engage said it'll use some proceeds from the stock sale for working capital and product development. The company also will devote some money to increasing its sales and marketing activities and to expanding its international operations, and to possible acquisitions.

Engage reported a net loss of $10.4 million in the six months ended January 31, compared with net income of $3.7 million in the year-earlier period as the company realized a gain from the sale of product rights. Revenue was $4.3 million in the six months ended January 31, compared with revenue of $164,000 in the six months ended January 31, 1998.

Engage sold 6 million shares at $15 each yesterday, the top of the $13 to $15 range set by Goldman Sachs, which handled the sale. The sale, which represented a 13 percent stake, raised $90 million.

Engage trades under the symbol "ENGA." Hambrecht & Quist and Bear Stearns assisted in the sale.

Copyright 1999, Bloomberg L.P. All Rights Reserved.

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