24/7 Media Sells chinadotcom Shares For $11 Million Profit

Advertising firm 24/7 Media on Wednesday said it’s selling around 150,000 shares of its holdings in chinadotcom Corp., realizing a $11 million gain, a move which will boost 24/7 (TFSM) into profitability for the first quarter.

The move is at least partially aimed at getting the company attention both for becoming profitable, and for making wise investments. Since going public in July 1999 at $20, chinadotcom shares have skyrocketed, closing Tuesday at $87 1/6, after having split twice.

24/7 believes its stock, which opened today at 61 5/8, is undervalued, especially compared with neighbor and industry leader DoubleClick. 24/7 has a market capitalization of $1.39 billion, while DoubleClick’s is $9.96 billion.

The smaller company still holds 7.3 percent, or three million shares in chinadotcom. 24/7 also owns a piece of ShopNow.com, and says its stakes in both companies are worth $330 million based on closing prices on Monday. That represents a $285 million gain in paper wealth for 24/7.

In announcing the share sale, David Moore, the company’s chief executive officer, hinted that 24/7 would be making more investments in the future.

“We have exhibited a talent for identifying and nurturing strategic partners that not only bring great value to our business but also produce extraordinary investment returns,” says Moore.

“Our investments in chinadotcom and ShopNow.com, at current market prices, have the potential to fund growth and profits in the forseeable future, while also permitting us to continually build relationships through investments in the scores of promising companies we meet every month.”

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