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Tech Industry

Earnings Roundup: Peapod misses 1Q forecasts

Exluding $4.1 million in severance and one-time charges, Peapod (Nasdaq: PPOD) still missed analysts' estimates in its first quarter Wednesday, posting a loss of $8.6 million, or 47 cents a share, on sales of $24.9 million.

First Call Corp. consensus pegged Peapod for a loss of 46 cents a share in the quarter.

Its shares closed up 1/4 to 3 1/4 ahead of the earnings report.

On the bright side, the troubled company's sales improved 38 percent from the year-ago quarter when it lost $5 million, or 29 cents a share, on sales of $18 million.

Including what the company called "extraordinary expenses" of $4.1 million related to severance arrangements, investment transaction costs and other one-time events, Peapod lost $12.7 million, or 70 cents a share, in the quarter.

However, the embattled online grocer might consider Wednesday's disappointing results a victory considering how close it was to going out of business altogether.

Last month, Dutch grocer Royal Ahold NV rescued the company when it agreed to buy 51 percent of Peapod for $73 million after four investment firms cancelled a $120 million investment.

Meanwhile, Peapod shares have fallen from a 52-week high of 16 3/8 in November to a low of 2 in April.

Despite the lackluster results, company officials tried to put their best spin on the quarter.

"Peapod performed better than ever during the first quarter while we were focused on securing long term financing for the company," said Chairman Andrew Parkinson in a prepared release. "We delivered record revenues on a monthly, weekly and daily basis."

In its fourth quarter, Peapod topped analysts' estimates, losing $9.1 million, or 50 cents a share, on sales of $21.6 million.

Four of the five analysts following the stock rate it a "hold."

Among other technology companies reporting earnings Wednesday:

  • The Knot Inc. (Nasdaq: KNOT) posted a smaller-than-expected loss in its first quarter, losing $2.9 million, or 20 cents a share, on sales of $3.7 million.

    Analysts were expecting the online wedding information site to lose 29 cents a share in the quarter.

    Its shares closed up 1/4 to 5 5/8 ahead of the earnings announcement.

    The $3.7 million in sales marks a 1,813 percent improvement from the year-ago quarter when it lost $1.6 million, or 53 cents a share, on sales of $194,000.

  • Creative Computers Inc. (Nasdaq: MALL) posted a first-quarter loss of $6.8 million, or 66 cents a share, on sales of $238 million.

    It also announced that it's changing its name to IdeaMall.

    Ahead of the earnings announcement, Creative Computers shares fell 19/32 to 6 3/4.

    There was no First Call consensus estimate for the company this quarter.

    In the year-ago quarter, it lost $2.3 million, or 22 cents a share, on sales of $176.3 million.