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Stereotaxis Beats, Loss Widens

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Medical equipment maker Stereotaxis Inc’s fourth-quarter fiscal 2011 loss per share of 10 cents was lower than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of 14 cents and above the year-ago loss of 5 cents. The Missouri-based company’s losses more than doubled year over year in the quarter to $5.5 million, hit by a double-digit decline in revenues.

For the full year, loss per share of 58 cents a share also came in below the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 61 cents a share and was higher than the year-ago loss of 39 cents a share.

Revenues shrank 20% year over year to $11.6 million in the fourth quarter, yet beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $10 million. For the fiscal, revenues dipped 22% year over year to $42 million, but was ahead of the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $40 million.

Softness in the company’s Niobe business was, in part, responsible for the lower sales. Stereotaxis recorded sales of $2.3 million and $1.8 million from its Niobe and Odyssey systems, respectively, in the fourth quarter.

Stereotaxis offers the Niobe Magnetic Navigation System, which allows physicians to perform complex interventional procedures. Moreover, its Odyssey Enterprise Solution integrates and records all lab data allowing physicians to focus on the patient for optimal procedure efficiency. The company, in April 2011, introduced its new Epoch (or Niobe ES) electrophysiology platform.

Systems sales slid 49% year over year to roughly $4.2 million in the fourth quarter. Recurring sales from disposables, services and accessories climbed 18% to a record $7.4 million.

New capital orders clipped 58% year over year in the quarter to $3.6 million and comprised 1 Niobe ES systems order, 11 Niobe system upgrades, 3 Vdrive robotic navigation systems and $1.4 million in Odyssey system orders.

Gross margin fell to 71.4% in the quarter from 73.4% a year ago. Operating expenses declined 8.7% year over year to $12.9 million. The company reduced its operating expenses in 2011 through headcount and discretionary spending cuts.

Stereotaxis ended fiscal 2011 with cash and cash equivalents of roughly $14 million, down 60% year over year. Total debt increased 33% year over year to $38.5 million, including a $15.2 million financing secured through Cowen Healthcare Royalty Partners.

Moving forward, Stereotaxis targets to achieve at least 10 new Niobe ES system orders in fiscal 2012 and complete 40 such system upgrades during the first half of the year.

Stereotaxis develops and markets advanced cardiology instrument control system for use in cardiac catheterization labs for the treatment of coronary artery disease and arrhythmias. The company’s competitors include Boston Scientific (BSX - Free Report) and Edwards Lifesciences (EW - Free Report) .

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