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Bottomline Technologies warns of disappointing bottom line

Bottomline Technologies Inc. (Nasdaq: EPAY) on Tuesday warned that will post a loss of up to 10 cents a share in its first quarter due to Y2K spending by its corporate clients.

First Call consensus expected Bottomline to earn 8 cents a share in the quarter.

Company officials said the developer of Internet payment and commerce software will post sales of between $8.2 million to $8.5 million, slightly ahead of the $8.1 million it recorded in the year-ago quarter.

"We have recently confirmed that the Y2K issue has started to impact customer buying decisions," said CEO Dan McGurl in a prepared release. "We now expect the Y2K issue to impact both the September and December quarter-end revenues and earnings.

Bottomline shares closed off 11/16 to 25 ahead of the profit warning.

"Longer term, we are excited and optimistic about Bottomline's core electronic payment business and its continued growth potential once the uncertainty of Y2K passes," McGurl said.

After soaring up to an all-time high of 98 in March, Bottomline shares have floundered of late.

One of the two analysts covering the stock rates it a "buy" while the other calls it a "hold."