IMRIS reports record sales and order bookings and continued growth in order backlog in 2008



    Continued global expansion establishes presence in Europe and Pacific Rim

    WINNIPEG, Feb. 25, 2009 /CNW/ - IMRIS Inc. (TSX: IM) ("IMRIS" or the
"Company") today reported its financial results for the fourth quarter and the
year ended December 31, 2008.

    Highlights:

    
    -   During the fourth quarter the Company received purchase orders for
        four new systems increasing the order backlog by 114% year-over-year
        to $67.8 million.
    -   Sales for the quarter were $5.7 million compared to $3.4 million in
        the fourth quarter of 2007, bringing annual sales to $23.0 million, a
        32% increase over the prior year.
    -   Gross profit on sales for the quarter improved to 27.0%, up from
        13.6% in the fourth quarter of 2007, and for the year, the gross
        profit increased to 22.1% from 13.0% in 2007.
    -   The Company completed its first two installations in the Pacific Rim
        with deliveries in Mumbai, India and Beijing, China.
    -   The Company completed development and received regulatory approval in
        Canada and U.S. for a 3 Tesla version of its IMRISneuro suite and
        delivered the first 3 Tesla system to Calgary Foothills Hospital.
    -   The Company entered into a letter of intent in the fourth quarter of
        2008 with University Health Network and Princess Margaret Hospital in
        Toronto on a collaborative research agreement to develop a system for
        use in image guided radiation therapy and interventional procedures.

    "We are very pleased with the results in the fourth quarter and the 2008
year as a whole." stated David Graves, Chairman, President and Chief Executive
Officer. "Notwithstanding the current economic environment, IMRIS achieved
record sales and order bookings during the quarter, and our order backlog at
the end of 2008 gives us a solid base to work from as we move into 2009."
    Mr. Graves added, "IMRIS continued to expand its global reach in 2008 by
establishing a presence in Europe, Japan and Australia. As we head into 2009,
our strategy remains focused on the release of new products such as
IMRIScardio, the world's first integrated Angio-MR system, as well as growing
our order backlog and recurring revenue sources."

    Selected Financial Highlights
    (in CDN dollars)
    (Unaudited)

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                 Three Months Ended                   Year ended
                    December 31,          %          December 31,         %
                 2008          2007    Change     2008          2007   Change

    Sales    $  5,733,845  $  3,424,391  67%  $ 22,952,486  $ 17,445,058  32%

    Gross
     profit  $  1,547,965  $    467,001 231%  $  5,076,700  $  2,264,620 124%
    GP %            27.0%         13.6%              22.1%         13.0%

    Operating
     expen-
     ses     $  6,318,036  $  4,888,158  29%  $ 23,818,912  $ 16,973,130  40%

    Net
     loss    $ (3,815,092) $ (4,069,168)      $(16,962,892) $(14,570,193)
             ---------------------------      ---------------------------
             ---------------------------      ---------------------------

    Basic and
     diluted
     loss
     per
     share   $      (0.14) $      (0.16)      $      (0.62) $      (0.75)
             ---------------------------      ---------------------------
             ---------------------------      ---------------------------

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    

    Fourth Quarter and Annual 2008 Results

    Sales for the fourth quarter were $5.7 million compared to $3.4 million
in the fourth quarter of 2007, bringing annual sales to $23.0 million,
compared to $17.4 million in 2007. The year-over-year increase was directly
attributable to an increase in IMRISneuro system installations. The 2008 sales
resulted mainly from deliveries against installations in five locations,
including two in the Asia Pacific region and three in the North American
market. Sales for the current year included $22.2 million of revenues
associated with new IMRISneuro system deliveries and $0.8 million of revenues
associated with extended maintenance contracts.
    Gross profit for the fourth quarter of 2008 was $1.6 million or 27.0% of
sales versus $0.5 million or 13.6% of sales in the same quarter last year.
Gross profit for the year increased by approximately $2.8 million over 2007
and as a percentage of sales, improved to 22.1% compared to 13.0% in 2007. The
increase in gross profit percentage is primarily due to reduced discounts to
penetrate the market and the implementation of focused programs to reduce the
direct costs of our systems. Notwithstanding the year-over-year margin
improvement, gross profit for the year was adversely affected by a final net
loss of $0.2 million recorded in the first quarter of 2008, associated with
costs overruns on two strategic customer sites projects announced in 2007.
    Operating expenses for the fourth quarter of 2008 increased 29% to $6.3
million compared to $4.9 million in the fourth quarter of 2007. For the year
ended December 31, 2008, operating expenses were $23.8 million, an increase of
$6.8 million or 40% over the previous year. The increase is reflected across
all major functional areas of the Company, as we continued to build capacity
and develop our core competencies. The growth in operating expenses in 2008 is
largely attributable to increased staffing. As we move forward into 2009,
management believes the Company is now adequately staffed to handle the
anticipated growth in demand for IMRISneuro in the near to mid-term and
therefore we anticipate that our operating expenses will remain relatively
stable in the near term future.
    The net loss for the fourth quarter of 2008 was $3.8 million compared to
$4.1 million in 2007. For the year ended December 31, 2008 the net loss was
$17.0 million, an increase of $2.4 million over 2007. This increase was mainly
due to increased staffing costs which were partially offset by higher gross
profit.

    Order Backlog

    During the fourth quarter of 2008, the Company received purchase orders
for four new systems, increasing the order backlog to $67.8 million as at
December 31, 2008, compared to $48.5 million as at September 30, 2008 and
$31.7 million at the end of 2007.

    Outlook

    In 2008, our gross profit margins improved as a result of improved
pricing and product sourcing and focused programs to reduce the direct costs
of our systems. We expect to see this positive trend continue into 2009.
Margins are also expected to improve in 2009 relative to 2008 if the current
foreign exchange rates remain stable.
    Operating expenses for 2009 are expected to increase only modestly over
2008. The Company has reached a point where we do not foresee the need to
materially increase our staffing and resulting operating expenses to meet the
anticipated growth in operations over the next 12 months.
    We continue to be optimistic about our long-term prospects, while also
recognizing that we are not immune to the current economic challenges facing
all businesses as a result of the weakening credit environment. Going forward,
we will continue to focus our strategies on commercializing our IMRISneuro
products globally and by introducing and developing new products such as
IMRIScardio.
    Over the near term, we will be particularly focused on generating
additional orders for IMRISneuro, carefully managing our expenses and
improving our gross profit margins. Our longer term objectives include
continued innovation and development of high value imaging solutions for
specific surgical applications, the strengthening of our technology base and
competitive barriers and the growth of recurring revenue sources.
    The Company's full financial statements as well as management's
discussion and analysis will be available at www.sedar.com and www.imris.com.

    Conference Call

    Management will host a conference call to discuss the results at 4:30
p.m. ET (3:30 p.m. CT) on Wednesday February 25, 2009. Following management's
presentation, there will be a question-and-answer session for analysts and
institutional investors. To participate in the teleconference, please call
416-644-3423 or 1-800-731-5774. To access the live audio webcast, please visit
IMRIS' website at www.imris.com. A taped rebroadcast will be available to
listeners following the call until midnight (ET) on March 4, 2009. To access
the rebroadcast, please call 416-640-1917 or 1-877-289-8525 and enter passcode
21298797 followed by the number sign. The webcast will also be archived on
IMRIS' website.

    About IMRIS

    IMRIS (TSX: IM) is a global leader in providing fully integrated,
advanced surgical imaging solutions. The company's flagship product,
IMRISneuro, utilizes patented technology that allows a high field MRI scanner
to be moved in to the operating room on demand, providing imaging during the
surgical procedure without compromising patient safety. This unique and
innovative system has been validated by leading neurosurgeons for use in
world-class neuroscience centers.
    For more information, visit www.imris.com.

    Forward-Looking Statements

    This press release may contain or refer to forward-looking information
based on current expectations. In some cases, forward-looking statements can
be identified by terminology such as "anticipate", "may", "expect", "believe",
"prospective", "continue" or the negative of these terms or other similar
expressions concerning matters that are not historical facts. These statements
should not be understood as guarantees of future performance or results. Such
statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors
that may cause actual results, performance or achievements to be materially
different from those implied by such statements. Although such statements are
based on management's reasonable assumptions, there can be no assurance that
actual results will be consistent with such statements. Forward-looking
statements are subject to significant risks and uncertainties, and other
factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from expected
results. These forward-looking statements are made as of the date hereof and
we assume no responsibility to update or revise them to reflect new events or
circumstances.





For further information:

For further information: Investor Relations Contact: Ron Sabourin,
Executive Vice President, Finance and Administration and Chief Financial
Officer, IMRIS Inc., Tel: (204) 480-7090, Email: rsabourin@imris.com; Media
Contact: Brad Woods, Investor Relations, IMRIS Inc., Tel: (204) 480-7094,
Email: bwoods@imris.com

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IMRIS Inc.

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