RealTime IT News

RealNetworks Sees Profits Down From Previous Year

Despite meeting analysts' estimates of 2 cents per share for the fourth quarter, RealNetworks Inc. Tuesday revealed that its revenues have been cut by 40 percent from the same period last year.

The company reported net earnings for the quarter of $3.9 million, compared to earnings of $6.6 million, or 4 cents per share in 1999. Net revenues for the quarter were $58.2 million, an increase of 34 percent from $43.5 million in the same period last year.

Rob Glaser, chairman and chief executive officer of RealNetworks Inc, cited the turbulent high-tech market that "impacts everyone" for the sharp decline in profits, but said he and his firm are bullish on their future prospects.

Glaser referred to the company's progress for its RealSystem iQ, a streaming media delivery platform launched in December that has lured such tech players as Akamai Technologies, Digital Island and Enron Broadband Services for its ability to create peer-to-peer networks and high-tech broadcasting services.

Another reason Glaser said he considered his firm a grand slam, is the establishment of its GoldPass subscription service, which he said yields recurring revenue streams that don't rely solely on advertising.

In its six month, GoldPass has reached 150,000 subscribers.

Just yesterday, the company scored a slam dunk by getting the National Basketball Association NBA to agree to offer NBA.com TV to the GoldPass subscriber base, marking the first time that cable television content will be available live through an Internet content subscription service.

As for its key media product, RealPlayer, it is still the reigning king of players in the market. Last week, Media Metrix reported that as of November 2000, 28 percent of users surveyed indicated that RealPlayer was their device of choice on their home PCs.

RealNetworks closed down more than 3 percent, to $10.75, Tuesday.

Clint Boulton is an assistant editor for Internetnews.com, a property of Internet.com.