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Excite shrinks losses

Strategic agreements and increased traffic boost Excite's jump in revenue and shrink its net loss for the December quarter.

Strategic agreements and increased traffic boosted Excite's (XCIT) fourth-quarter revenue and aided its shrinking net loss as the company beat analysts' expectations.

Excite posted a net loss of $7.7 million, or 47 cents a share, for the quarter ending December 31, 1997, compared with a loss of $12.7 million, or $1.06 a share, a year ago. Excluding acquisition charges, Excite at a glance the company would have posted a loss of $3.65 million, or 22 cents a share.

Analysts had expected Excite to report a loss of 26 cents a share, according to First Call.

Revenue for the fourth quarter reached $18.7 million, up 187 percent from $6.5 million reported a year ago. The revenue figure marked a 30 percent sequential increase, to $14.4 million, from the preceding quarter.

Excite's page-view traffic rose to about 27 million per day in December 1997, an increase of 48 percent over average page views in September 1997.

Banner ad revenue in the fourth quarter also was up, increasing 38 percent over the third quarter.

For the year, Excite reported revenues of $50.1 million--up from $14.7 million reported during the previous year. The company's net loss for the year was $30.2 million, down from $43.1 million reported during the previous year.

Excite stock ended the day up a notch at 38-13/32, an increase of 3/32 from yesterday's close of 38-5/16.