Liberate's loss widens on interactive TV spending

The company says its fiscal second-quarter loss widened as it spent more to develop interactive-television software for using the Internet on regular TVs.

SAN CARLOS, Calif.--Liberate Technologies said its fiscal second-quarter loss widened as the company spent more to develop interactive-television software for using the Internet on regular TVs.

The loss widened to $68.4 million, or 66 cents a share, from $12.5 million, or 15 cents a share, a year earlier, Liberate said in a statement. Sales in the period ended Nov. 30 surged 93 percent to $11.7 million from $6.07 million.

The company was expected to have a loss of 82 cents a share, said Peter Ausnit, an analyst at Deutsche Banc Alex Brown, which has a "buy" rating on the stock. Liberate was forecast to have second-quarter sales of $10 million, the average estimate of six analysts surveyed by First Call/Thomson Financial.

Liberate and rivals such as OpenTV have been boosting spending for software that lets TV viewers play along with broadcast game shows, buy advertised products, and use the Internet.

Liberate's research and design spending rose 81 percent to $11.4 million from $6.3 million a year earlier.

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