Vital Images scales back 2003 forecast in wake of weak 4Q

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Lower-than-expected sales in the fourth quarter has led Vital Images Inc. to revise its year-end forecast for 2003.

The company now estimates fourth-quarter revenues of $5.1 million to $5.4 million and earnings ranging from net income of $150,000 to a net loss of $400,000.

If those projections hold, Vital Images would post revenues for 2003 of approximately $26.7 million to $27 million, with earnings between $7.7 million to $8.3 million. Full-year earnings include a net tax benefit of $6.3 million.

In 2002, Vital Images reported revenues of $21.1 million and net income of $790,000.

Vital Images President and CEO Jay D. Miller said the company is "very disappointed with our fourth-quarter results, but we remain optimistic about Vital Images' opportunities in the 3D medical imaging market."

The company plans to accomplish the goal by improving its "sales execution process with the goal of closing more business," Miller added. "The 3D imaging market has become more competitive as the medical community increasingly recognizes the clinical value of this technology, and customers are asking for more distributed 2D, 3D and 4D visualization products."