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Olivetti Reports Increased Loss

Italian computer maker Ing. C. Olivetti SpA said higher financing costs and one-time restructuring costs widened its net loss in 1994, but said that it was getting closer to breaking even at the operating level.

Olivetti said its net loss grew to $413 million in 1994, compared with $282.6 million in 1993. It was the fourth-straight year of losses, bringing the total losses for the period to more than $12.8 billion.

The loss was worse than expected by analysts, who predicted a loss of as much as $331.5 million.

Olivetti’s North American headquarters is in Liberty Lake. Although results for domestic operations are not reported separately, spokesman Leni Selvaggio said 1994 was a good year. He added that 1995 has been even better, as evidenced by the recent announcement of a major banking-system sale to Citibank.

The parent company posted a much narrower operating loss, with the goal of breaking even this year.

Sales revenue increased 7.6 percent, the second year in a row that sales have risen after shrinking in 1991 and 1992.

Sales in the first four months of 1995 grew by 14 percent, the company said.

Olivetti, the largest European-based computer maker, said profit margins have been squeezed by less-expensive clones, whose popularity have prompted computer price wars.

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