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Startup 3D0 in red for year

Starting a company can be an expensive proposition when it comes to multimedia.

The 3D0 Co., one of the closest watched entrants by Wall St. in the new multimedia industry, posted a net loss of $ 15.4 million ($ 1.02 a share) for the fiscal year ended March 31.

The company — a start-up chip and software developer with no products on hand — reported no revenues.

The San Mateo-based outfit, which is 18 months old, expects to have revenues in fiscal 1994 based on sales for this coming Christmas.

The company disclosed that since October 1991 it has racked up $ 18.1 million in losses. At the end of its fiscal year, the company had $ 2.8 million in cash and equivalents on the balance sheet. (Fourth-quarter results were not made public, because 3DO went public only last month.)

Financial stability shouldn’t be a problem, though, because of its Hollywood pedigree. 3D0 counts Time Warner, Universal Studios parent Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. and AT&T as investors. The results also don’t reflect the approximately $ 37.5 million raised in its initial public offering last month.

Expected to have an impact on future results is 3DO’s buy-out of NTG Engineering, the group responsible for designing its computer chips. The NTG partners will receive $ 600,000 in cash, plus 1.8 million shares of 3D0 common stock.