SOURCE: Ventana Medical Systems, Inc.

September 08, 2005 16:45 ET

Ventana Moves Symphony Launch to Q2, 2006 to Incorporate New Reagent Formulation

TUCSON, AZ -- (MARKET WIRE) -- September 8, 2005 -- Ventana Medical Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: VMSI) announced today that it is moving the launch of its Symphony system for fully automated H&E primary staining to Q2, 2006 so that it can incorporate an improved reagent chemistry formulation which enhances slide quality while reducing cost. This improvement is an outcome of the increased investment by the company in the internal development of world class life sciences capabilities.

Commenting on the decision, Christopher Gleeson, Ventana's President and CEO stated that, "Clearly we were excited with our plans to have Symphony on the market in 2005. The current system had successfully completed all internal trials and was ready to go to full beta trials and launch using our previous chemistry protocol; however, moving the launch to allow the incorporation of this new formulation is the right decision given the enhancement in the diagnostic quality of the H&E slides and the positive impact on the long-term profitability of this program."

The Company is contacting its beta sites and working through a new beta schedule that is planned to commence early in Q1 of next year, recognizing that the currently configured instrument will require certain non field upgradeable design changes and internal revalidation before shipment to customer sites.

The company is maintaining its guidance for 2005 with revenues in the range of $196 to $198 million and EPS of $0.75. There is also no change in the guidance for 2006 which is revenue growth of approximately 20%.

Ventana develops, manufactures and markets instrument/reagent systems that automate slide preparation and staining in clinical histology and drug discovery laboratories worldwide. Ventana's clinical systems are important tools used in the diagnosis and treatment of cancer and infectious diseases. Ventana's drug discovery systems are used to accelerate the discovery of new drug targets and evaluate the safety of new drug compounds.

Any statements made about the Company's anticipated financial results are forward-looking statements subject to risks and uncertainties, such as the risks inherent in the development, manufacturing, marketing and sale of medical products, competitive factors, general economic conditions, legal disputes, and government actions as more fully described in Ventana's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2004. Actual results may differ materially from anticipated results.

Visit the Ventana Medical Systems, Inc. website at www.ventanamed.com.

Contact Information

  • Contact:
    Christopher M. Gleeson
    President and CEO
    (520) 229-3787

    Nick Malden
    Chief Financial Officer
    (520) 229-3857

    VENTANA MEDICAL SYSTEMS, INC.
    1910 Innovation Park Drive
    Tucson, Arizona 85755
    (520) 887-2155