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Musicmaker.com&#039s iffy IPO gets off to decent start

Tech Industry

Shares of Musicmaker.com (Nasdaq: HITS) moved up 6 3/4 to 20 3/4 in its initial public offering Wednesday. After pricing at $14 a share last week, the stock moved up to a high of 22 1/8 in early trading.

Lead underwriter Ferris Baker Watts originally priced the 8.4 million-share offering at between $12 to $14 a share.

In its most recent fiscal year, the seller of personalized music CDs and downloadable tunes, lost $4.6 million on sales of only $74,028.

To make matters worse, Musicmaker's first quarter sales were down from the $22,400 in the same quarter year ago.

Musicmaker.com's lack of sales and earnings apparently wasn't enough to scare off some IPO-hungry investors.

About a year ago, it was generally understood that companies should have about $10 million in annual revenue before going public. That threshold was blown away by a bunch of fledgling Net companies such as theglobe.com Inc. (Nasdaq: TGLO).

Then that revenue bar fell even lower. Salon.com Inc. (Nasdaq: SALN) had annual revenue of $2.9 million and was ridiculed.

Apparently Musicmaker.com and its underwriters knew what the market could bare.

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