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Business sale gives DoubleClick boost

The Internet marketing company reports a third-quarter net loss that is reduced by 40 percent, but its shares slip in late trading.

DoubleClick announced Tuesday that its third-quarter net loss shrank by 40 percent, in part bolstered by selling some of its operations.

The Internet marketing company reported a net loss of $62 million, or 46 cents a share, on revenue of $74.6 million for the quarter ended Sept. 30. That compares with a net loss of $103.5 million, or 77 cents, on revenue of $92.7 million a year ago.

Excluding one-time gains from the sale of its North American media business and @plan research business, as well as other one-time charges, DoubleClick posted pro forma earnings of $6.6 million, or 5 cents a share. The company attributed its pro forma profit to the divestiture of less profitable businesses and managing costs.

Analysts estimated the company would earn 1 cent a share, according to First Call.

"We are very focused on profitability and generating cash and that is coming through in our performance for the third quarter. We have proven we can deliver strong performance in a difficult economic environment," CFO Bruce Dalziel said in a statement.

The company also noted its fourth-quarter revenue is expected to range between $62 million and $66 million, with pro forma earnings falling between a loss of 1 cent and a profit of 1 cent. Analysts are expecting the company to earn a 1 cent profit for the fourth quarter.

Shares of DoubleClick fell in after-hours trading to $5.33. During the regular session, the stock closed up 5 cents, or nearly 1 percent, to $6.03.

In a separate announcement Tuesday, DoubleClick and Macromedia said they are developing a technology platform to deliver advertisements created with the Flash animation tool.

The partnership comes as Web publishers are increasingly allowing so-called rich media advertisements. In recent months, Yahoo and AOL, among others, have signed partnerships with EyeBlaster, EyeWonder and Unicast to deliver floating Web ads, expandable banners and pop-ups that can deliver TV-quality commercials.