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WorldHeart Reports 2009 Financial Results

SALT LAKE CITY, March 1 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- ("WorldHeart"; Nasdaq: WHRT) - World Heart Corporation, a developer of mechanical circulatory systems, today reported the net loss for the year ended December 31, 2009 of $16.7 million, or a $1.26 loss per basic and diluted share, compared to a $25.3 million net loss, or a $4.37 loss per basic and diluted share in 2008. The decrease was primarily the result of one-time, non-cash clinical and marketing expenses of $6.5 million and one-time debt inducement expense of $3.9 million that we recognized in 2008 related to warrants issued to a strategic partner and the subsequent conversion of debt to common stock.  The decrease in clinical and marketing expenses and the debt inducement expense in 2009 was offset by increases in research and development expenses as well as selling, general and administrative expenses.  These increased costs are associated with the preparation for the Levacor™ VAD Bridge-to-Transplant (BTT) clinical study which received unconditional approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in January 2010.

Revenues were $5,000 for the year ended December 31, 2009, as compared to $1.7 million for the year ended December 31, 2008. The decrease in revenue from 2008 to 2009 is the result of our November 2006 decision to suspend our commercial efforts with respect to the Novacor LVAS and focus our efforts and resources in the development of the Levacor VAD.  In 2007 and 2008, we made the Novacor LVAS available to medical centers only until our inventory was depleted, which occurred in mid-2008. Additionally, we did not have any SPUS (Segmented Poly Urethane Solution) revenue in 2009 as compared to $785,000 in 2008.  The decrease is a result of this revenue being associated with one customer who placed no orders in 2009.  

At December 31, 2009 our balance sheet reflected $6.1 million in cash, cash equivalents and marketable investment securities, which is exclusive of the $7.1 million in net proceeds from the January 2010 private placement. This compares to $20.7 million in cash and cash equivalents at December 31, 2008.

"With our unconditional approval for the BTT clinical study in January coupled with the financing we recently completed, we are well positioned to move our Levacor VAD program forward.  We are excited to offer the world's only fully magnetically levitated, bearingless, implantable centrifugal pump to heart failure patients in the U.S.," added Mr. J. Alex Martin, President and Chief Executive Officer.

About WorldHeart

WorldHeart is a developer of mechanical circulatory support systems headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah. World Heart's registered office is in Delaware, USA.

Forward-Looking Statements

Any forward-looking statements in this release are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and include all statements relating to the proposed use of proceeds, of the private placement, increase in shareholder value, access to investment capital, and the growth of WorldHeart's overall business,  as well as other statements that can be identified by the use of forward-looking language, such as "believes," "feels," "expects," "may," "will," "should," "seeks," "plans," "anticipates," or "intends" or the negative of those terms, or by discussions of strategy or intentions. Investors are cautioned that all forward-looking statements involve risk and uncertainties, including without limitation: WorldHeart's need for additional capital in the future; risks in product development, regulatory approvals and market acceptance of and demand for WorldHeart's products; risks involved in the Levacor VAD Bridge-to-Transplant (BTT) clinical study; and other risks detailed in WorldHeart's filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, including without limitation its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2008 and its Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q for the quarters ended March 31, 2009, June 30, 2009 and September 30, 2009.

                              WORLD  HEART CORPORATION                        
                       Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheets                  
                              (United States Dollars)                         
                                          December 31, 2009  December 31, 2008
                                          -----------------  -----------------
    Current assets                                                            
      Cash and cash equivalents                  $5,562,670       $20,703,724 
      Marketable investment securities              499,417                 - 
      Trade and other receivables, net               18,907           322,548 
      Inventory, net                                341,614                 - 
      Prepaid expenses and other current                                      
       assets                                       271,966           458,294 
                                                    -------           ------- 
                                                  6,694,574        21,484,566 
    Long-term assets     
      Property and equipment, net                   879,833           651,572 
      Intangible assets, net                              -           107,916 
      Other long-term assets                         36,360           156,360 
                                                     ------           ------- 
                                                    916,193           915,848 
                                                    -------           ------- 
      Total assets                               $7,610,767       $22,400,414 
                                                 ==========       =========== 
    LIABILITIES AND SHAREHOLDERS' EQUITY                                      
    Current liabilities                                                       
      Accounts payable and accrued                                            
       liabilities                               $1,522,199        $1,388,675 
      Accrued compensation                          645,306           897,086 
      Note payable - short term                     102,877                 - 
      Deferred rent                                  18,967             3,671 
                                                     ------             ----- 
                                                  2,289,349         2,289,432 
                                                  ---------         --------- 
    Long-term liabilities                                                      
      Note payable - long term                      580,123                 - 
      Other long term liabilities                    82,309                 - 
                                                     ------               --- 
      Total liabilities                           2,951,781         2,289,432 
                                                  ---------         --------- 
    Commitments and Contingencies                                             
    Shareholders' equity                                                      
      Common stock, no par value,                                             
       13,312,265 shares issued and
       outstanding                              325,279,751       325,087,252 
      Additional paid-in-capital                 18,389,635        17,323,629 
      Cumulative other comprehensive loss        (6,285,577)       (6,285,577)
      Accumulated deficit                      (332,724,823)     (316,014,322)
                                               ------------      ------------ 
      Total shareholders' equity                  4,658,986        20,110,982 
                                                  ---------        ---------- 
      Total liabilities and                                                   
       shareholders' equity                      $7,610,767       $22,400,414 
                                                 ==========       =========== 
                         WORLD HEART CORPORATION                     
             Condensed Consolidated Statements of Operations         
                         (United States Dollars)                     
                                              Year Ended December 31,
                                                 2009          2008 
                                                 ----          ---- 
    Revenue                                     $4,765    $1,732,143 
    Cost of goods sold                        (212,975)     (992,197)
                                              --------      -------- 
    Gross profit (loss)                       (208,210)      739,946 
                                              --------       ------- 
    Operating expenses                                               
      Research and development              10,111,152     9,047,531 
      Selling, general and administrative    5,682,295     4,752,372 
      Clinical and marketing support                 -     6,478,619 
      Restructuring costs                      577,666       131,431 
      Amortization of intangibles              107,916       191,424 
                                               -------       ------- 
        Total operating expenses            16,479,029    20,601,377 
                                            ----------    ---------- 
    Operating loss                         (16,687,239)  (19,861,431)
    Other income (expenses)                    (23,262)   (5,455,353)
                                               -------    ---------- 
    Net loss                              $(16,710,501) $(25,316,784)
                                          ============  ============ 
    Weighted average number of common                                
     shares outstanding: basic and                                   
     diluted                                13,273,462     5,798,940 
                                            ==========     ========= 
    Basic and diluted loss per common                                
     share                                      $(1.26)       $(4.37)
                                                ======        ====== 

SOURCE World Heart Corporation

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SOURCE World Heart Corporation
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