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Rising expenses offset high ValueVision sales

Rising cable access fees and expansion costs chipped away at ValueVision International’s fourth quarter profit, which dropped 9% to $ 126,840 or 1 cents per share after investment gains despite a 110% surge in sales.

Without benefit of the $ 342,934 in interest income from the short-term investment of proceeds from the offering, ValueVision would have reported an operating loss of $ 216,094 or one cent per share.

ValueVision stock closed 50 cents higher at $ 8.75. No estimates were available for the company, which has little analyst coverage.

ValueVision issued 4.6 million shares of common stock worth about $ 13.13 per share for a total of $ 60 million in Nov. and Dec. 1993. It also exercised an unspecified number of warrants over the past fiscal year.

The TV home shopper, which earlier this week said it would acquire National Media for $ 11.50 cash per share, reported operating expenses rose 129% to $ 5. 68 million in the quarter ended Jan. 31, 1994. Sales gained 110% to $ 14.01 million. Shares outstanding more than tripled to 24.9 million.

Lost $ 1.93 mil

For the full-year period, ValueVision lost $ 1.93 million or 12 cents a share after a gain of $ 301,136 due to interest income and an extraordinary charge of $ 511,309 for early prepayment of debt in July 1993. Without the onetime loss, ValueVision would have lost $ 1.41 million or 9 cents per share compared to 1993 ‘s comparable loss of $ 1.67 million or 23 cents per share.

As for the current quarter, ValueVision said telemarketing sales hit a record $ 2.2 million in the last week of February. “The company’s strong sales are continuing into our first fiscal quarter,” chief financial officer Mark Payne said in a statement. “Expanded telephone systems and computer operations allowed us to handle these more efficiently.”

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