P.M. BRIEFING : Atari Reports Third-Quarter Loss of $97 Million, Blames Federated

From Times wire services

Atari Corp., the video game and computer maker, reported a third-quarter net loss of $97 million largely because of its ailing subsidiary, the Federated Group. In an effort to stem its losses, Atari announced that it would begin treating the Federated Group as a discontinued operation. Atari also said it was considering its possible sale, spinoff or leveraged buyout. The Federated Group, a chain of about 50 retail electronics stores, suffered a third-quarter loss of $106.3 million and a year-end loss of $124.2 million.

Atari’s third-quarter net income loss of $97 million, a loss of $1.67 per share, compared to a profit of $18.7 million, or 32 cents per share, in the same period in 1987. For the year, it lost $84.8 million loss, a loss of $1.46 per share, contrasted with a gain of $57.4 million, or 76 cents per share, in 1987.

In the report released Wednesday, Atari said net sales in the third quarter totaled $152.6 million, compared to $146.4 million in the same period of 1987. For 1988, the company had sales of $452.2 million, compared to $362.6 million the previous year.