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ICG losses increase in 4Q

Shares of Internet Capital Group (Nasdaq: ICGE) fell in afterhours trading after the company reported a wider fourth quarter loss and repeated expectations of further losses.

After market close, the Internet investment company reported a loss of $23.4 million, or 9 cents per share, for the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31. ICG lost $2 million in the December quarter. The company reiterated previous statements that it expects net losses "in many quarters for the foreseeable future."

There are no consensus analyst estimates for ICG.

ICG stock tumbled as low as 108 in afterhours activity. Shares closed Thursday's regular trading at 119 1/8, down 1/8 for the session.

Fourth quarter revenue for ICG advanced to $1.75 million from $1.27 million in the year ago period. But the company noted its portfolio companies saw combined revenue of $143.5 million in the fourth quarter, compared to $41 million a year earlier.

For the full year, ICG lost $29.8 million, or 15 cents per share, compared to net income of $13.9 million in 1998.

"Internet Capital Group enjoyed a remarkable year in 1999," said Walter Buckley, ICG's president and CEO. "Our partner companies continued to benefit from the enormous market opportunities created by the growth of business-to-business e-commerce."

Company executives focused on ICG's portfolio expansion in 1999. ICG, which invests solely in business-to-business companies, spent $180 million in the fourth quarter for an ownership position in MetalSite, which sells steel online. ICG spent a total of $412 million on acquisitions and financings. The company bought stakes in 10 companies, and carried through 20 follow-on financings.

Also Thursday, the company said it would issue $450 million in stock to buy a stake in eCredit.com, which specializes in financing and credit information for businesses.