Palm narrows Q1 loss

  • Joris Evers (IDG News Service)
  • 22 September, 2003 07:36

Palm reported a narrower than expected loss on Thursday for the first quarter of its 2004 fiscal year, helped by higher average selling prices for its products and tight inventory and cost controls.

The US-based handheld computer and software vendor reported a loss of $US21.75 million for the three-month period ended August 29. That compares with a $258.75 million net loss in the year-earlier period, Palm said in a statement.

Excluding costs related to restructuring and other special items, Palm's loss was $16.9 million, or $0.58 cents a share, beating the consensus estimate of $0.83 per share from six analysts polled by Thomson First Call. In the year-earlier period Palm reported a loss excluding special items of $36.4 million, or $1.26 a share, it said.

Revenue for the quarter rose 3 per cent to $177.4 million, from $172.3 million a year ago, the company said. Revenue was below the consensus estimate of five analysts polled by Thomson First Call of $185.4 million.

Palm said it shipped about 645,000 Palm handhelds in the quarter. About 1.2 million Palm-powered handhelds were shipped in total, according to PalmSource, which sells licences for the Palm OS (operating system).

Palm is in the process of acquiring Handspring and plans to spin off PalmSource later this year. Following the spin off, Palm's hardware company will be renamed palmOne, the company has said.