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Q3 mostly sucked

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Gateway announced its Q3 loss yesterday, a tidy $520 million. Sales dropped to $1.4 billion for the quarter, compared to the $2.5 billion it posted in the same period last year, which made it $132 million in profit.

The company tried to balance the news with a message of optimism for the future, swearing to become profitable again by the end of the current quarter.

Exiting its foreign markets is costing the company dear. It allocated $571 million for closing overseas operations, call centres and manufacturing plants, as well as writing down investments. Of course, these are one time costs, which is why it is able to keep hoping for better times in this quarter,

The PC maker is battling at the moment. While Dell is taking advantage of Compaq/HP confusion to grab a little extra market share, Gateway is just trying to keep its head above water. Not long ago, analysts were recommending that it find itself a merger partner, but it is difficult to see who would want to merge with the business right now. ®

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