RealTime IT News

IPOs Steal the Show

Strong showings from two Internet IPOs, one backed by an industry heavyweight, stole the show Friday as Internet investors searched for something to cheer about at the end of a tumultuous week.

internet.com's Internet Stock Index closed off 10.90, or 1.96 percent, to 544.86, the Nasdaq Composite gained 14.89 to 2,816.84 and the Dow Jones industrial average jumped 172.56 to 10,470.24.

The day saw two IPOs rake in healthy gains, led by Sycamore Networks Inc. (SCMR). The company, whose software optimizes fiber-optic networks, soared 386 percent in its first day, gaining 146-3/4 to 184-3/4. Sycamore priced 7.475 million shares at $38 each.

The other strong performer was Web site developer NaviSite Inc. (NAVI). Shares soared 20-5/8 to 34-5/8.

The company, which is backed by Internet venture fund CMGI Inc. (CMGI), sold 5.5 million shares at $14. BancBoston Robertson Stephens was the lead underwriter.

Among the leaders, Amazon.com Inc. (AMZN) lost all of its gains to end off 2-1/8 to 78-5/8 and barnesandnoble.com Inc. (BNBN) gained 1/8 to 18-1/2.

Amazon late Thursday sued its online competitor, accusing the company of illegally duplicating its patented 1-Click online shopping feature.

Inktomi Corp. (INKT) plunged 17-7/16 to 103-1/16. The maker of Internet search technology was downgraded to near-term "neutral" from near-term "accumulate" by Merrill Lynch's Henry Blodgett.

Exodus Communications Inc. (EXDS) gained 3/16 to 73-11/16 after hitting 80-15/16 earlier in the session. The company reported a third-quarter loss of 34 cents a share, including a one-time charge. Analysts had expected the company to report a 29-cent loss.

A number of analysts raised their ratings on the stock, including Morgan Stanley which increased Exodus to "strong buy" from "outperform," Paine Webber upped its price target by $20 to $120 and maintained its "buy" rating and Thomas Weisel Partners upgraded the stock to a "strong buy" from a "buy."

Other leaders were mixed, with America Online Inc. (AOL), off 2-1/4 to 120, BroadVision Inc. (BVSN) up 7-1/4 to 196-7/8, Check Point Software (CHKP) vaulted 5-3/8 to 103-1/2, Juniper Networks Inc. (JNPR) reversed course to end up 3 to 261-3/4 and DoubleClick Inc. (DCLK) lost 6-3/16 to 122-3/4.

Leaders in the red included Ariba Inc. (ARBA) down 16-1/4 to 158-3/4, CNET Inc. (CNET) slumped 6-3/16 to 47-3/8, Verisign Inc. (VRSN) lost 1-5/8 to 112 and Yahoo! Inc. (YHOO) fell 3-13/16 to 178-1/8.

Level 3 Communications Inc. (LVLT) jumped 5-1/16 to 62-3/8 after reporting a third-quarter loss of 43 cents a share, 9 cents less than analysts had forecast.

PCOrder.com Inc. (PCOR) vaulted 8-1/4 to 46-1/2. The company, whose technology helps companies sell products and services online, reported a third-quarter loss of 5 cents a share compared to a 35-cent loss a year ago.

VerticalNet Inc. (VERT) gained 4-7/16 to 62-7/16. The business-to-business Web site operator inked a deal with IBM Corp. (IBM) to use its servers and other products.

Finally, Ramp Networks (RAMP) plunged 11-1/4 to 10-1/4 after the company reported a loss of 12 cents a share in the third quarter, 11 cents higher than analysts had expected.

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