Stock Watch: Restructuring Brings Value Back to ‘America’

Value America, Inc. (Nasdaq: VALU) rose 1 Thursday to 6 1/16. After the close a day earlier, the online retailer reported stronger-than-expected results for the fourth quarter and provided an optimistic outlook for the future. Revenue for the fourth quarter rose 216 percent to $61.2 million. The company’s loss before restructuring charges of 91 cents a share was better than the 95 cents expected by analysts.

President and Chief Executive Officer Glenda Dorchak called the quarter “a watershed period” for the company, which was in the midst of a restructuring that included laying off half of the workforce, curtailing the product line and overhauling the Web site. “We exited unprofitable business lines to focus on offering computers, consumer electronics and office products directly to consumers and businesses,” said Dorchak.

Value America said it intends to achieve revenue growth of 60 to 70 percent this year, and to be profitable by the end of 2001. Customer service has improved, expenses have been cut, and advertising expenses are lower as a percentage of sales costs, the company said.

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