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Beyond.com sees huge restructuring charge in 1Q

    It just keeps getting worse for Beyond.com. The online software and e-commerce service provider now says it will take a restructuring charge of between $11 million to $14 million in its first quarter.

    Beyond.com (Nasdaq: BYND) shares fell 1/4 to 3 1/4 Wednesday.

    In its annual report filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Sunnyvale, Calif. company said it grossly understated the restructuring charges it announced in January.

    Originally, it expected to take a charge of between $2 million to $3 million.

    In the annual report, Beyond.com also said it had terminated existing marketing agreements with AOL, CNet, Excite, Yahoo and ZDNet, parent company of this Web site, at a cost of $5.8 million. It also has reduced its workforce by 20 percent and consolidated some of its facilities.

    Company officials said that these actions will "lower future operating expenses and reduce cash obligations for the remainder of fiscal 2000."

    Five of the six analysts following the stock maintain a "hold" recommendation.

    Since peaking at 37 last April, Beyond.com shares have collapsed to a low of 3 earlier this week.

    In its latest quarter, it posted a loss of $22.4 million, or 62 cents a share, on sales of $35.3 million.

    Last year, it lost $88 million, or $2.59 a share.

    First Call consensus expects it to lose 46 cents a share in its first quarter and $1.68 a share in the fiscal year.