Abiomed, aided by its Impella heart pumps, ends FY 2012 in the black

Abiomed ($ABMD) was once best known for its self-contained artificial heart. But the Danvers, MA device company ended its 2012 fiscal year in the black, with record revenue in hand, thanks in large part to its Impella pumps, which are designed to aid an ailing heart rather than replace it.

For the company's fiscal 2012 fourth quarter, Abiomed booked $37.3 million in revenue, up 31% versus the $28.5 million from the same period last year.  Net income hit profitable territory, reaching $2.6 million, or 6 cents per diluted share, versus a $1.8 million net loss in the 2011 fourth quarter and loss of 5 cents per diluted share. Even more crucial here though is this: The company reported $1.5 million in net income for the entire fiscal year, versus an $11.8 million net loss in fiscal 2011. Revenue for fiscal 2012 also soared for the year, reaching $126.4 million, up 25% compared to $101.2 million the previous fiscal year.

This is a huge deal for the company, which achieved its first profitable year in 15 years, as MassDevice notes in its coverage of the financial report. Impella products drove much of this, with global revenue reaching nearly $107 million (just over $99 million of that came from the U.S.), up 37% versus the $78.2 million generated in 2011. Investors liked the news, pushing the company's stock $1.50 higher to $25 in May 16 trading, before settling back down to the $23.50 range the next day.

Meanwhile, Chairman, President and CEO Michael Minogue wasn't short on the hyperbole, referring to the earnings report as the "best quarter and year in company history in terms of number of patients supported, revenue growth and profitability."

Abiomed's focus on Impella products continues. The company obtained a CE mark for its Impella cVAD heart pump and plans to launch the device in Europe this summer. Among its distinctions: The percutaneous heart pump provides peak flow of about four liters of blood per minute.

For fiscal 2013, Abiomed says its revenues should jump by up to 24%, hitting a range of $152 to $157 million.

- read the Abiomed release
- check out MassDevice's take