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Engage makes progress – and loses $700m

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US marketing software outfit Engage Technologies saw losses grow to almost $700 million for its second financial quarter.

The Massachusetts-based outfit, majority owned by CMGI, reported a net loss of $695.6 million, or $3.53 per share, for the quarter ended January 31 2000. Before extra items, including restructuring costs, its net loss was $41.3 million, or 21 cents per share.

This compared to a $51.6 million loss for the same period the previous year.

Sales dropped ten per cent to $28.1 million, a situation blamed on "a media market which has softened in fiscal 2001 as compared to fiscal 2000".

Despite this, Engage president and CEO Tony Nuzzo remained upbeat: "Much of the progress that we made during the second quarter is not evident on our income statement and balance sheet," he said today.

"This is not unexpected. Although the recent corporate restructuring is beginning to have positive effects internally, we believe it will take a few more quarters before the results are apparent."

In January the company warned it would not meet sales targets, it announced it would cut half its workforce -around 560 people - by April 30 this year. The move, expected to save the company $120 million to $150 million per year, was part of Engage's drive to break even.

It said it expects to do this by the end of Q1 in its fiscal year 2002, or by October 31 2001. ®

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