AQuantive Fourth-Quarter Profits Surge

NEW YORK AQuantive said its fourth-quarter profits rose 73 percent thanks to a robust Internet ad market and its acquisition of interactive agency Razorfish.

AQuantive’s fourth-quarter net income was $7.1 million, or 10 cents per share, up from $4.1 million in fourth-quarter 2003. The profits were double aQuantive’s 5 cents per share guidance for the quarter.

The Seattle-based online advertising company said its fourth-quarter revenue was $60.7 million, compared to $18.5 million in the year-ago quarter. The company’s fourth-quarter 2003 does not include media spending on behalf of advertising clients.

Looking ahead, aQuantive expects first-quarter revenue between $55 million and $59 million, and net income of 2 cents to 5 cents per share.

“2004 proved an extremely strong year for the online advertising industry, and it was no different here at aQuantive,” Brian McAndrews, aQuantive’s CEO, said on a conference call.

The company saw growth in all three of its business segments, reporting 76 percent fourth-quarter revenue growth excluding its acquisitions. The digital marketing services unit, which includes Avenue A/Razorfish, generated $36.7 million in revenue, compared to $8.8 million a year earlier. Operating income was $3.8 million, up from $1.8 million in fourth quarter 2003.

Aquantive’s technology division, which includes ad server Atlas DMT, had $18.9 million in revenue, up from $8.9 million in the previous year’s fourth quarter. Net income was $9.2million, compared to $3.1 million.

Digital performance media, aQuantive’s newest unit, had $5.1 million in fourth-quarter revenue and $645,000 in operating income. The division includes DRIVEpm, an online ad broker that buys cheap ad inventory from publishers and resells it to advertisers, typically on a performance basis, using targeting technology to reach desired audiences. DRIVEpm was officially launched in April 2004. In the third quarter, the performance media unit generated $2.8 million in revenue and $99,000 in operating income.