business

Goldman Likes Priceline's Deal with AOL

Analyst Anthony Noto thinks the company is positioned to deliver above-expected results for the first quarter of 2002

Goldman Sachs says Priceline.com's (PCLN ) deal with AOL is positive for the company, and reiterated the firm's market outperform rating on the stock.

Analyst Anthony Noto sees the deal as the first of several online marketing alliances to be announced as the cost of online distribution has declined. In the past, Noto says, Priceline relied exclusively on offline marketing; he thinks the shift could drive incremental traffic. Noto believes Priceline will meet his Street-high fourth-quarter estimates for $233 million in revenues an breakeven profitability, vs. the $225 million and breakeven consensus. He thinks Priceline is positioned to deliver above-expected results for the first quarter of 2002, which is not only the company's seasonally strongest quarter, but could also benefit the company if published airline prices increase, drawing price-sensitive travelers to its site.

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