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Correction to This Article
An Oct. 28 Business article about XM Satellite Radio's third-quarter earnings referred to Jonathan Jacoby, a Banc of America Securities analyst, as Jason Jacoby.
XM Reports a Wider Third-Quarter Loss

Friday, October 28, 2005

XM Satellite Radio Holdings yesterday reported a wider third-quarter loss that it attributed to increased programming and marketing costs even as its revenue and subscriber base continued to grow. The company's shares fell 10 percent, as analysts expressed concern about the number of new GM cars sold with XM radios.

The District-based subscription radio provider said it lost $131.9 million (60 cents a share), up from $118 million (59 cents) for the comparable period a year earlier. Third-quarter operating expenses rose 58 percent, to $262.6 million from $165.9 million.

Revenue surged to $153.1 million, a 134 percent increase from $65.4 million. The company said it added 617,152 subscribers in the quarter. XM charges its 5 million subscribers about $12.95 a month to receive 150 channels of music, sports, talk and entertainment.

XM leads its New York-based competitor, Sirius Satellite Radio, in the race for customers. As of June 30, Sirius had 1,814,626 subscribers. But the two firms have an almost equal share of the retail market, said a recent report by analyst Jason Jacoby of Banc of America Securities.

XM signs up about half its subscribers through automakers that include XM receivers as a standard feature in some models and the rest through retail sales of its radios in stores such as Best Buy.

General Motors, an investor in XM, on Wednesday said it would install XM satellite radio receivers in 1.5 million cars in 2005. In an XM conference call yesterday, analysts expressed concern that the number may not represent sufficient growth from last year. XM has installation deals with GM, Toyota and Honda, while Sirius has similar arrangements with Ford Motor and other automakers. Shares of XM closed at $28.07, down $3.14.

-- Annys Shin

Duratek , a Columbia company that handles radioactive materials and other hazardous waste, earned $2.8 million (18 cents a share) in the third quarter, down 70 percent from $9.3 million (63 cents) in the comparable quarter a year earlier. Revenue declined 13 percent, to 67.1 million. The company said it lost money on two federal government contracts and had less new work on commercial projects than anticipated. Shares plummeted, falling $5.30, or 29.4 percent, to close at $12.70.

Black and Decker , the Towson-based toolmaker, earned $140.6 million ($1.73 a share) in the third quarter, up 25 percent from $112.5 million ($1.35) in the comparable quarter a year earlier. Revenue increased 23 percent to $1.58 billion. The company said double-digit growth in its consumer business reflected strong orders for laser tools, screwdrivers and accessory sets.

Strayer Education of Arlington, which operates for-profit colleges, earned $6.4 million (44 cents a share) in the third quarter, a 25 percent increase from $5.1 million (34 cents) in the comparable quarter a year earlier. Revenue grew by 24 percent, to $47.1 million. The company said it plans to open eight new campuses in 2006.

Educate of Baltimore, operator of tutoring programs including Sylvan Learning Centers, reported its third-quarter profit tripled to $2.7 million (6 cents a share) from $903,000 (2 cents) in the comparable quarter a year earlier. Revenue increased 26 percent, to $78.9 million.

Advancis Pharmaceutical , a Germantown biotech company, narrowed its third-quarter loss to $5.9 million (20 cents a share) from $9.3 million (41 cents) in the comparable 2004 period. Revenue increased 139 percent, to $7.4 million. Advancis shares closed at $1.41, down 8 cents.

Celera Genomics , a Rockville biotech firm, narrowed its fiscal first-quarter loss to $16.7 million (23 cents a share) for the three months ended Sept. 30, from $20.3 million (28 cents) in the comparable period a year ago. Revenue decreased 78 percent, to $2.1 million. Shares of Celera closed at $11.29, down 69 cents or 5.8 percent.

Collegiate Funding Services of Fredericksburg, which provides loans to students and loan services to campuses, earned $9.3 million (29 cents a share) in the third quarter, up 22 percent from $7.6 million (25 cents) in the comparable quarter a year earlier. Revenue rose 4 percent, to $61.7 million. Loan originations totaled $1.29 billion, up 8 percent.

Capital Automotive REIT of McLean reported funds from operations increased to $38.3 million (65 cents a share) in the third quarter from $32.3 million (64 cents) in the comparable quarter a year earlier. The McLean real estate investment trust, which buys land under automobile dealerships, said its profit increased 14 percent, to $24.8 million (47 cents) from $21.8 million (50 cents). Revenue grew 21 percent, to $62.4 million.

Choice Hotels International of Silver Spring, a franchiser of hotel brands, earned $32.5 million (48 cents a share) in the third quarter, up 31 percent from $24.9 million (36 cents) in the comparable quarter a year earlier. Revenue increased 11 percent, to $142 million.

CarrAmerica Realty , a District-based real estate investment trust, said funds from operations for the third quarter were $40.1 million (64 cents a share), down from $51.2 million (85 cents) in the comparable quarter a year earlier. It earned $13.6 million (17 cents), down 64 percent from $37.6 million (61 cents). Revenue declined 2 percent, to $116.9 million. CarrAmerica owns and operates almost 300 office buildings, totaling 27 million square feet in 12 U.S. markets.

SafeNet , a Baltimore company that provides information security systems, earned $1.1 million (4 cents a share) in the third quarter, up slightly from $996,000 (4 cents) in the comparable quarter a year earlier. Revenue increased 7 percent to $63.4 million.

AceComm , a Gaithersburg company that provides communications software, earned $99,000 (1 cent a share) for its fiscal first quarter ended Sept. 30, compared with a loss of $383,000 (3 cents) in the comparable quarter a year earlier. Revenue grew 43 percent, to $6.7 million.

MicroStrategy , a McLean business software firm, reported profit of $13.3 million (91 cents a share) in the third quarter. Because of a $103.6 million non-cash income tax benefit, the company earned $122 million ($7.22) in the comparable period last year. Revenue rose 9 percent, to $65.8 million.

From staff reports.

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