IAR Bits and Bytes

FindWhat.com Continues Profit Streak

New York-based pay-for-performance search engine FindWhat.com posted its fourth-straight profitable quarter, with a profit of $2 million, or $0.10 per share

The firm’s net income represented a 23 percent increase over last quarter’s performance, and was $0.04 per share ahead of projections. Revenue for the quarter increased 9 percent to $8.7 million.

A large amount of that increase was due to a greater number of paid click-throughs in the quarter. The search engine registered 50.8 million paid clicks, an increase of 10 percent from 46.2 million in fourth quarter.

The number of active advertiser accounts on the FindWhat.com search engine also increased 8 percent from last quarter, to 16,500.

For the full year, management raised guidance for earnings of $0.44 per share, from $0.29 per share.

“That is an impressive achievement on a number of levels — technical, operational, managerial — and is a testament to the effectiveness of our advertising platform, the hard work of our employees, and the faith of thousands and thousands of advertisers,” said President and Chief Executive Craig Pisaris-Henderson. “Our challenge continues to be generating awareness about our products and achievements, both in our marketplace and on Wall Street, and we intend to step up our marketing efforts in both areas throughout the year.”

The firm also said that its ongoing litigation with Overture , the market leader in pay-for-performance search, remains on track. Currently, the courts are determining whether the cases will be heard in New York or Los Angeles, FindWhat said, adding that the firm projects to spend about $1 million per year on litigation until the cases are resolved.

Avenue A Beats Guidance

Seattle-based ad agency and server Avenue A also exceeded previously announced guidance in its first-quarter results.

The firm posted revenue of $23.5 million, leading to a pro forma loss of $1.8 million, or $0.03 per share. Net losses totaled $3.9 million, or $0.06 per share.

Last quarter, the firm posted a pro forma loss of $2.0 million, or $0.04 per share, a net loss of $4.5 million, or $0.08 per share, and revenue of $24.4 million.

Despite the decline in revenue, President and CEO Brian McAndrews said the firm was “pleased with the results of the first quarter,” adding that the company’s agency division is turning a profit.

In addition, the company announced that its board of directors had authorized a stock repurchase program, under which up to $15,000,000 of the company’s common stock could be repurchased with available funds.

NetRaker Signs Yahoo Market Research Deal

Web portal Yahoo will employ usability and market research tools from fellow Sunnyvale, Calif.-based firm NetRaker.

NetRaker’s suite of online tools include usability testing, clickstream analysis, and benchmarking against competitors, for use in studying the site’s visitor behavior. Through the agreement, the suite will be rolled out to Yahoo units worldwide.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

In addition to Yahoo, NetRaker users include Century21.com, ClassMates.com and Agency.com.

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