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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
W. Richard Ulmer
To Our Shareholders: InVitro International finished the 1997 fiscal
year by recording its lowest quarterly loss since becoming a public
company in 1991. The loss for the quarter ended September 30, 1997,
was $232,000, or $0.01 per share, compared to a loss of $568,000,
or $0.04 per share in the quarter ended September 30, 1996. Our
loss for the full 1997 fiscal year was $1,331,000, or $0.09 per
share, compared to a loss of $1,898,000, or $0.15 per share in fiscal
As our shareholders are aware from prior announcements, InVitro
has experienced significant financial difficulties primarily as
a result of low sales volume. Erosion in demand for our non-animal
safety testing alternatives continued in fiscal 1997 as revenues
declined to $720,000 from $1,063,000 in fiscal 1996. To maintain
the Companyís survival, operations have been significantly downsized
during the last three years by staff reductions and other decreases
in operating expenses. The Companyís plan of operation is to seek
a suitable merger partner in an effort to preserve and hopefully
enhance shareholder value. InVitro is a clean public company, free
of debt, with a diversified shareholder base that should be attractive
to an appropriate merger candidate.
For the present, we have been able to maintain and preserve the
Companyís core business while merger possibilities are pursued.
To compensate in part for sales staff reductions, we have added
agents and partner laboratories that have been appointed and trained
in Europe, Asia and the Unites States. With these changes and my
agreement to defer temporarily a portion of the Presidentís salary,
the most recent quarter ended December 31, 1997, showed a small
increase in the Companyís cash position from operations as compared
to September 30, 1997. This is the first time InVitro has experienced
positive cash flow from operations in a fiscal quarter. If the Company
can successfully maintain this position or the immediate future,
your management is committed to preserving INVIís core business
and seeking new customers while continuing the search for a suitable
Our preferred merger partner, Miragen Inc., to date has been unable
to complete a transaction due to delays in obtaining additional
financing. At the request of Miragenís Board, I have agreed to serve
on a part-time basis as Miragenís Acting President and Chief Executive
Officer. I believe this affords an excellent opportunity to assess
Miragenís potential and progress while it continues to pursue financing
necessary for Miragen to become a viable merger prospect.
Notwithstanding my current role in Miragen, my topmost priority
is to preserve INVIís core business and to take any steps possible
for INVI to attain the goal of standing on its own financially.
As we maintain InVitroís technology and core capabilities, the Company
is impatiently waiting for government and industry to move toward
non-animal testing. There are new glimmers of hope from time to
time as, for example, November 1997 legislation passed in the United
Kingdom that prohibits animal testing for new cosmetic products
marketed in the U.K.
Thank you for your continued support. We encourage shareholders
and friends of the Company to put pressure through your purchasing
decisions on industries such as cosmetics, industrial chemicals,
textiles, personal care products and petrochemical in support of
non-animal safety testing methods. As always, I can be reached at
1-800-2-INVITRO, extension 260, if I can be of help or service.
17751 Sky Park East, Suite G
Irvine, CA 92614
949-851-8356 (International callers)
949- 851-4985 Fax