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Aetrium Reports Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year 2012 Results and Announces Decision to Explore Strategic Alternatives



Aetrium Reports Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year 2012 Results and Announces
Decision to Explore Strategic Alternatives

ST. PAUL, Minn., Feb. 27, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Aetrium Incorporated
(Nasdaq:ATRM) today announced results for its fourth quarter and fiscal year
ended December 31, 2012.

Revenue for the fourth quarter of 2012 was $1,543,000 as compared to revenue
of $2,371,000 in the fourth quarter of 2011. Net loss for the fourth quarter
of 2012 was $865,000, or $0.08 per share, as compared with a net loss of
$602,000, or $0.06 per share, in the fourth quarter of 2011. Revenue for the
2012 fiscal year was $6,241,000 as compared to revenue of $9,009,000 for
fiscal year 2011. The net loss for fiscal year 2012 was $6,111,000, or $0.57
per share, as compared to a net loss of $4,748,000, or $0.44 per share, in
fiscal year 2011.

"Our fourth quarter sales increased sequentially from the third quarter of
2012 due primarily to an increase in sales of our reliability test products,"
said Joseph C. Levesque, president and CEO of Aetrium Incorporated. "We sold
reliability test systems to two new customers in the quarter, including a high
capacity system sold to a government sponsored location in India involved in
the aerospace field. This is our first sale to a customer in India and this
will be a high profile installation. Although the reliability test equipment
side of our business is doing well, it is still feeling the impact of the
extreme caution exhibited by our customers as they scrutinize and limit their
capital spending amid uncertain economic and generally weak industry
conditions. However, we believe our technically superior products and growing
customer base will continue to serve us well in the current business climate
as the industry develops even more advanced geometry IC's, and in the next
industry up cycle.

"The continued poor financial results for our test handler product line remain
the result of weak business conditions in the Integrated Circuit (IC) industry
characterized by weak IC demand and low production equipment utilization
rates," added Mr. Levesque. "As we indicated last quarter, we continue to
believe that excess production capacity in the industry will not likely be
absorbed and capacity-driven equipment purchases will not likely resume until
the second half of 2013 at the earliest. Accordingly, we are focusing our
efforts on containing costs and pursuing sales opportunities in niche
applications and unique situations where little or no excess capacity exists."

Aetrium also announced that it believes it is the right time to reignite its
efforts to explore strategic alternatives for the company. Based on its recent
business portfolio review to determine the optimal mix of businesses for
maximizing shareholder value, the company is considering options that may
include, among others, a sale or other disposition of one or both of its
reliability test and test handler product groups. Given the distinct natures
of its two product groups, the company may pursue a different strategic
alternative for each business.

Certain matters in this news release are forward-looking statements which are
subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ
materially from those projected. Such risks and uncertainties include, but are
not limited to, adverse domestic or global economic conditions, slowing growth
in the demand for semiconductor devices, the volatility and cyclicality of the
microelectronics industry, changes in the rates of capital expenditures by
semiconductor manufacturers, progress of product development programs,
unanticipated costs associated with the integration or restructuring of
operations, and other risk factors set forth in the Company's SEC filings,
including its Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2011 and its Form 10-Q
for the quarter ended September 30, 2012.

Aetrium, based in North St. Paul, Minnesota, is a leading supplier of
proprietary technologies and equipment that are used by the worldwide
semiconductor industry to test ICs. The company's products are used by
customers to advance reliability, improve quality, increase product yield or
improve manufacturing processes. Aetrium's common stock is publicly traded on
the Nasdaq market under the symbol ATRM.  More information about Aetrium is
available on the internet at www.Aetrium.com.

The Aetrium Incorporated logo is available at
http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=6943

Aetrium Incorporated
Consolidated Statements of Operations
(Unaudited)
(in thousands, except per share data)
                                                                     
                                                                     
                                     Three Months ended  Year ended
                                     December 31,        December 31,
                                     2012      2011      2012       2011
                                                                     
                                                                     
Net sales                             $ 1,543   $ 2,371   $ 6,241    $ 9,009
 Cost of goods sold (1)              759       1,149     6,162      6,203
Gross profit                         784       1,222     79         2,806
Gross profit percent                 50.8%     51.5%     1.3%       31.1%
                                                                     
Operating expenses:                                                  
 Selling, general and administrative 1,428     1,484     4,811      5,101
(2)
 Research and development (3)        221       345       1,382      2,487
 Total operating expenses            1,649     1,829     6,193      7,588
                                                                     
Loss from operations                 (865)     (607)     (6,114)    (4,782)
 Interest income                      2        5         9          34
 Interest expense                     (2)       --       (6)         -- 
Loss before income taxes             (865)     (602)     (6,111)    (4,748)
 Income taxes                         --        --        --         -- 
                                                                     
Net loss                              $ (865)   $ (602)   $ (6,111)  $ (4,748)
                                                                     
                                                                     
Net loss per share (basic and         $ (0.08)  $ (0.06)  $ (0.57)   $ (0.44)
diluted)
                                                                     
Weighted average common shares        10,781    10,781    10,781     10,781
outstanding (basic and diluted)
                                                                     
                                                                     
                                                                     
                                     Three Months ended  Year ended
                                     December 31,        December 31,
                                     2012      2011      2012       2011
(1) Cost of goods sold includes the                                  
following:
Excess and obsolete inventory         $ 10      $ 15      $ 2,776    $ 1,131
charges
Severance charges                     --        --        93         57
                                                                     
(2) Selling, general and
administrative expenses includes the                                 
following:
Severance charges                     --        205       39         275
                                                                     
(3) Research and development                                         
expenses includes the following:
Credit related to state refundable    (37)      (70)      (37)       (70)
research credits
Severance charges                     --        --       95          141

 
Aetrium Incorporated
Consolidated Balance Sheets 
(Unaudited)
(In Thousands)
                                                         
                                                         
                                           December 31, December 31,
                                           2012         2011
Assets:                                                  
Current assets:                                          
Cash and cash equivalents                   $ 3,013      $ 5,008
Accounts receivable, net                    466          1,324
Inventories, current                        2,347        7,731
Other current assets                        143          53
Total current assets                        5,969        14,116
                                                         
Property and equipment, net                 162          109
                                                         
Inventories, noncurrent                     1,810        --
Other asset                                 58           30
                                                         
Total assets                                $ 7,999      $ 14,255
                                                         
                                                         
Liabilities and shareholders' equity:                    
Current liabilities:                                     
Trade accounts payable                      $ 596        $ 506
Other current liabilities                   692          1,051
Total current liabilities                   1,288        1,557
                                                         
Noncurrent liabilities                      131          256
                                                         
Shareholders' equity                        6,580        12,442
                                                         
Total liabilities and shareholders' equity  $ 7,999      $ 14,255

CONTACT: Paul Askegaard
         Aetrium Incorporated
         (651) 704-1812

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