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Acuson’s first-quarter earnings down

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Ultrasound manufacturer Acuson said its first-quarter (end April 31) 2000 revenue was down approximately $8 million compared to the first quarter of 1999. First-quarter 2000 revenue was $111.6 million, compared to $119 million in first quarter

Ultrasound manufacturer Acuson said its first-quarter (end April 31) 2000 revenue was down approximately $8 million compared to the first quarter of 1999. First-quarter 2000 revenue was $111.6 million, compared to $119 million in first quarter 1999.

Earnings per share for the quarter were 7¢ compared to 21¢ for the same period a year earlier.

Acuson announced estimates of these earnings last month. The final results fell within Acuson’s expected range of $110 million to $112 million.

“As we reported last week, orders for our base ultrasound platform business met our expectations and increased strongly over the first quarter of last year,” said Samuel H. Maslak, Acuson’s CEO and chairman of the board, in a statement. “However, later-than-expected receipt of these orders precluded us from achieving our revenue target for the quarter.”

Maslak also blamed the low earnings on lower-than-expected revenue for the KinetDx Ultrasound PACS solution.

At the end of the first quarter of this year, Acuson had $27.1 million in cash. At the end of the fourth quarter of 1999, the company had $23.7 million in cash (not $157 million as reported in SCAN 4/26/00). Acuson had $144 million in accounts receivable at the end of first-quarter 2000.

Despite the slow quarter, the company said orders for its Cypress platform were very strong. The Cypress system marks Acuson’s entry into the low- to mid-range cardiology ultrasound market.

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