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Advanced NMR may sell parts of Medical Diagnostics business


ANMR bought MDI in 1995 in white-knight rescueAdvanced NMR is in discussions with several companies regardingthe divestiture of parts of its imaging services business, theWilmington, MA, company announced last week. The revelation cameas the

ANMR bought MDI in 1995 in white-knight rescue

Advanced NMR is in discussions with several companies regardingthe divestiture of parts of its imaging services business, theWilmington, MA, company announced last week. The revelation cameas the vendor released year-end financial results registeringa net loss of $8.3 million.

Advanced NMR entered the imaging services segment in 1995 whenit bought Medical Diagnostics, which was fighting off a hostiletakeover bid from Raytel Medical (SCAN 5/10/95). Since then, MDIhas generated most of Advanced NMR's revenues as ANMR's InstaScanecho-planar imaging upgrade program has floundered. ANMR saidlast year that it would shut down the InstaScan program to focuson MDI's imaging services business (SCAN 8/28/96).

Advanced NMR is now looking to sell at least some of that business,however. The company said it would use proceeds from such a saleto repay a bank credit line and meet other obligations as theycome due in 1997.

The company will need the cash. According to its 10-K filingwith the Securities and Exchange Commission, Advanced NMR willhave trouble meeting its loan obligations, including an $11.9million bank credit facility that is secured by all the company'sassets. Several payments scheduled to be made last year on theloan have been deferred in agreement with the lender, but arescheduled to come due March 31.

"Based on current estimates of cash flow, managementdoes not believe that it will have sufficient cash to make mandatoryterm loan payments," the filing states. "The companyis continuing to actively pursue various funding options, includingthe sale of certain portions of the imaging and rehabilitationservices business segment. If the sale is successful, it willgenerate sufficient cash to meet obligations as they come duethrough fiscal 1997."

For fiscal 1996 (end-September), MDI contributed $26.1 millionin revenue to an overall total of $31 million for ANMR, with $4.8million coming from product sales. The company posted a net lossof $8.3 million, compared with a net loss of $3.9 million in thesame period ending Sept. 30, 1995. The results caused AdvancedNMR's stock to slump more than 10%, closing at 25¢ a shareon Jan. 15.

The net loss for 1996 includes ANMR's share of losses fromits subsidiary Advanced Mammography Systems, operating lossesfrom ANMR's technology division (which developed InstaScan), anda loss for discontinuing the technology division. MDI posted incomeof $817,000.

Annual results released on the same day from Advanced MammographySystems were not much better. The company had a year-end net lossof $3.2 million, with no revenues for the year from sales of itsAurora 0.5-tesla dedicated breast MRI scanner, which receivedFood and Drug Administration clearance almost a year ago. AMSchairman and CEO Jack Nelson said the company remains excitedabout Aurora's prospects, and it is in sales discussions withinstitutions in the U.S. and overseas.

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