January 30, 2001, 5:16 PM
Webvan expects lower loss, lower revenue
Webvan Group Inc.
announced today that a preliminary estimate for the fourth quarter of 2000 indicates a pro forma diluted loss of about 23 cents per share with revenues of approximately $84 million. "We expect that fourth-quarter earnings for fiscal year 2000 will better our earlier estimates for the period despite a general slowing of retail spending in the quarter," said George T. Shaheen, chairman and chief executive officer of Webvan. "We believe this preliminary estimate of better-than-expected loss per share is the direct result of the synergies realized from our acquisition of HomeGrocer.com and a significantly more efficient marketing spend. In addition to the slow down in retail spending, fourth quarter revenues were affected by internal capacity constraints and fewer first-time orders as we reduced marketing expenditures and focused on customer retention and ordering frequency. This focus on customer retention led to an expected average order size in the fourth quarter of $112 -- a 10% improvement over the third quarter of 2000." Actual results for the quarter ended Dec. 31, 2000 and information on the company's expectations for fiscal year 2001 will be reported on Jan. 25, 2001.