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eToys, other online consumer firms top 2Q estimates

    eToys (Nasdaq: ETYS) lost less than analysts expected in the first quarter.

    After market close Thursday, the online retailer of children's goods reported a fiscal first quarter loss of $45.4 million, or 37 cents per share, excluding amortization and special charges. First Call's survey of a dozen analysts predicted a loss of 39 cents per share for the quarter ended June 30.

    Including all charges, eToys lost $59.5 million, or 49 cents per share.

    Shares of eToys traded at 4 15/16 in afterhours activity on the Island electronic communications network, immediately following the release of quarterly results. The stock closed Thursday's regular trading at 5 1/16, down 5/16 for the session.

    First quarter revenue rose to $24.9 million, up 212 percent year-over-year. Gross margin increased to 21.9 percent, from 20.5 percent in the fourth quarter and 19 percent in the year-ago period.

    eToys picked up 219,000 customers in the second quarter to end the period with more than 2.1 million accounts. About 47 percent of the company's orders were from repeat customers.

    Average order size increased to $58, eToys' highest ever for a non-holiday quarter. eToys spent $72 to get each new customer in the quarter, though the company's averaged a per-customer acquisition cost of $38 over the past 12 months.

    "We are nearing the end of our infrastructure buildout, and we are ready for growth," CFO Steve Schoch said during a conference call with analysts.

    After getting $100 million in funding by selling preferred stock and convertible warrants, eToys ended the second quarter with $210.8 million cash and owned inventory.

    "Our cash position and paid up inventory give us the financial resources to stay the course in executing our business plans," Schoch said in a statement. "And we continue to opportunistically assess other financing options to ensure our capital needs."

    eToys expects to breakeven in fiscal 2002.

    Other companies reporting quarterly results:

  • eMusic
  • (Nasdaq: EMUS) surpassed bottom line forecasts in the second quarter.

    The online music specialist reported a second quarter loss of $13.6 million, or 34 cents per share, not counting special charges. First Call's survey of four analysts predicted a loss of 37 cents per share.

    eMusic lost $25.7 million, or 64 cents per share, including amortization, costs related to stock compensation, and severance expenses.

    Shares of eMusic traded at 2 1/2 in afterhours on Island. eMusic stock closed Thursday's regular trading at 2 39/64, up 27/64 for the session.

    Revenue in the second quarter rose 20 percent sequentially to $3.8 million. "EMusic continues to make excellent progress towards profitability," said Gene Hoffman, president and CEO.

    The company will start to benefit in the third quarter from recent cost-cutting moves, Hoffman said.

    eMusic finished the June quarter with cash and short-term investments of $34.3 million, down 26.9 percent from $46.9 million at the end of March.

    "Our strong revenue growth, complemented by the new subscription service and corporate transactions such as our agreement with HP, will strengthen our cash resources," CFO Joseph Howell said. "Combined with the expense reductions taken during the quarter, we are confident that EMusic has sufficient cash resources to achieve profitability and cash-flow positive operations."

    Earlier this week, eMusic rolled out a new subscription service.

  • E-Loan
  • (Nasdaq: EELN) topped analyst expectations in the second quarter.

    The online lending company reported a second quarter net loss of $9.7 million, or 22 cents per share, excluding special charges. First Call's survey of 14 analysts predicted a loss of 26 cents per share.

    Including goodwill writedowns, other amortization and charges related to stock options, E-Loan lost $23.1 million, or 53 cents per share.

    Shares of E-Loan closed Thursday's regular trading at 4 3/16, down 3/16 for the session.

    First quarter revenue grew to $8.5 million, a 19 percent gain sequentially and 86 percent improvement year-over-year.

    "We're pleased with our progress toward reaching profitability," CEO Chris Larsen said. "We have substantially increased revenues and, for the first time in our history, we have shown a year on year decrease in our operating loss."

  • Beyond.com
  • (Nasdaq: BYND) hurdled analyst forecasts in the second quarter.

    The developer of online stores reported a second quarter net loss of $11.1 million, or 29 cents per share, not counting amortization and deferred compensation. First Call's survey of three analysts predicted a loss of 35 cents per share for the quarter ended June 30.

    Including all charges, Beyond.com lost $20.3 million, or 53 cents per share.

    Shares of Beyond.com traded at 1 1/2 in afterhours on Island, following the quarterly report. Beyond.com closed Thursday's regular trading unchanged at 1 13/32.

    Second quarter revenue for Beyond.com increased to $30.7 million, up 17 percent from $26.3 million in the comparable period a year earlier. The company's eStore Group for manufacturers and software companies generated $10.6 million in revenue, a 15 percent gain from the first quarter. Government-related revenue increased 40 percent sequentially to $14.3 million.

    Revenue from the unit that operates Beyond.com's original business, an online software store, was $5.8 million. The company now considers the consumer store merely as a "reference" for potential eStore Group clients.

    Company executives focused on cost-cutting as they shifted Beyond.com from an online retailer of software to a builder and manager of other companies' Web stores. Operating expenses, excluding special charges, fell 40 percent to $14.6 million from $24.4 million in the first quarter.

    Beyond.com finished June with cash and cash equivalents totaling $42.6 million, down 15 percent from $50.1 million at the end of March. The company is looking at financing options, said Ronald Smith, president and CEO.

  • Autobytel.com
  • (Nasdaq: ABTL) topped the consensus estimate in the second quarter.

    The online network of automotive dealers reported a second quarter loss of $9.3 million, or 46 cents per share, excluding $500,000 in amortization costs. First Call consensus predicted a loss of 48 cents per share for the quarter ended June 30.

    Including all charges, Autobytel lost $9.8 million, or 48 cents per share.

    Second quarter revenue rose to $17.1 million, up 86 percent year-over-year and 13 percent from the first quarter, and ahead of analyst forecasts, the company said. International revenue topped $1 million in the second quarter. International fees and licenses and other services, generated 19 percent of Autobytel.com's revenue in the second quarter.

    Autobytel.com exited June with $100.3 million, including $36.7 million for Autobytel Europe. The company had $106.6 million in cash at the end of March. The company has enough cash to carry out its plan for international expansion, said mark Lorimer, president and CEO.>