Medical equipment maker Stereotaxis Inc ( STXS ) has commenced initial shipments of its new Epoch platform designed for the electrophysiology ("EP") labs. Launched in April 2011, Epoch is a comprehensive solution for EP labs and is geared to improve efficiency of cardiac procedures and increase workflow by enabling physicians to control procedures remotely.
The company noted that the initial shipments include upgrade to the next-generation Epoch platform from its Niobe II magnetic navigation system for clients across North America and Europe. As part of the upgrade, the European centers will also deploy Stereotaxis' Vdrive Duo mechanical arm robotic navigation system, which allows physicians to remotely manipulate devices such as catheters and sheath.
The Epoch platform integrates the benefits of remote magnetic catheter control, the efficiency of remote robotic device manipulation and the Vdrive mechanical robotic platform, allowing highly sophisticated procedural data integration and transmission.
The Epoch solution is expected to considerably cut procedure time for all types of robotic-assisted EP procedures including atrial fibrillation ablation procedures. Since its introduction, this new platform has generated considerable interest from both existing and prospective customers.
Missouri-based Stereotaxis develops and markets advanced cardiology instrument control system for use in cardiac catheterization labs for the treatment of coronary artery disease and arrhythmias.
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's competitors include Boston Scientific ( BSX ) and Edwards Lifesciences ( EW ).
Stereotaxis recently reported lackluster third quarter results with net losses swelling roughly 41% year over year to $7.3 million on account of a double-digit decline in sales. Revenues plummeted roughly 38% year over year to $8.5 million, hurt by weakness in the Niobe business and the ongoing migration from Niobe II to Epoch platform.
The company booked global new capital orders of $2.2 million in the quarter, comprised of four Niobe II to Epoch upgrades, two Vdrive navigation systems and $1.6 million in orders related to Odyssey.
The company's Board, in September 2011, approved its operating plan for the commercialization of the Epoch magnetic surgery platform and expansion of the Odyssey platform into standard laboratories. The plan includes realignment and reduction of operating expenses aimed at minimizing cash burn.
Stereotaxis, during the third quarter, completed a major portion of the expense reduction program by curtailing headcount and discretionary spending. It expects the cost containment efforts to lead to a reduction in annual operating costs by roughly 15%-20%.
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