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Healtheon/WebMD posts wider loss, higher revenues

The Internet health care company reports second-quarter results that beat analysts' estimates but says its quarterly loss widened compared to the previous year.

Internet health care company Healtheon/WebMD reported second-quarter results that beat analysts' estimates but said its quarterly loss widened compared to the previous year.

For the quarter, the Atlanta-based company posted a loss of $55.5 million, or 28 cents per share, better than the First Call/Thomson Financial consensus estimate of 34 cents. That compares with a loss of $12.7 million, or 18 cents per share, in the same period a year ago, the company announced after yesterday's market close.

Meanwhile, the company reported an

Gartner analyst Michael Davis says that just because Healtheon/WebMD beat analysts' expectations last quarter doesn't mean it is entering an era of wine and roses.

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increase in quarterly revenues. For the second quarter, revenues jumped to $101.1 million from $22.7 million in its year-ago period. Last quarter, the company posted revenues of $65.9 million.

Healtheon, which links doctors, patients, insurers and pharmaceutical companies via an online network, attributed more than half of its quarterly revenues to a significant increase in transaction revenues. Transaction revenues were $51.8 million, which largely came from additional revenues contributed through Envoy, Healtheon's claims processing unit, acquired earlier this year.

Internet transactions totaled approximately 7 million in the quarter, a jump from 4.8 million in the company's first quarter. Subscription revenues were up 35 percent to $9.2 million from the first quarter.

While most industry analysts expect Healtheon to continue to post losses until 2002, co-founder and Netscape veteran Jim Clark promises the company will turn a profit this year.