TiVo posts substantial rise in profit

From Times Wire Services

Digital video recorder pioneer TiVo reported Wednesday that its fiscal first-quarter net income more than quadrupled as costs for marketing and research declined.

Alviso, Calif.-based TiVo Inc. earned $3.6 million, or 4 cents a share, in the three months ended April 30, up from $835,000, or 1 cent, a year earlier. Revenue for services and technology totaled $54.9 million, down from $58.1 million last year.

Analysts, on average, had expected TiVo to post a loss of 1 cent a share on service and technology sales of $55.6 million, according to a poll by Thomson Financial.

But TiVo had 3.8 million total subscribers in the first quarter, compared with 4.3 million a year earlier.


Chief Executive Tom Rogers said TiVo’s recent partnerships with cable and satellite TV providers, its successes defending its patents and its audience research business, called StopWatch, have generated excitement. This quarter should calm concerns that TiVo can pull off a stand-alone set-top box business, he said.

TiVo said it would start a service that lets subscribers download movies from Walt Disney Co. Customers will be able to rent movies for a 24-hour period through an agreement with Disney and CinemaNow, TiVo said.

“We’ve really put some effort in the last few quarters into showing that the stand-alone business could be managed, particularly with respect to marketing expenditures . . . in a way that no one should have to worry about it being a drain that clouds the enthusiasm about these other areas,” Rogers said.

TiVo’s earnings were released after the stock market closed. The stock was little changed after-hours trading. TiVo fell 16 cents to $8.10 during Wednesday’s regular session.