FY20/21 ended on a high with all segments and regions returning to growth in H2 – momentum was led by the strong market recovery and the successful launch of Paradise. The profitability beat was also encouraging as the group’s structural optimisation initiatives have borne fruit. Given that pent-up demand needs to be satisfied and new demand is also emerging as vaccination gathers momentum, management has shared a promising outlook for FY21/22. Re-initiation of the share buy-back programme is th
Companies: Sonova Holding AG
The H1 20/21 beat was driven by a strong market rebound, robust commercial execution and the successful launch of Paradise. The hearing aid wholesale business fared better than retail, though cochlear implant was a drag. Geographically, Asia-Pacific led the recovery with positive sales growth in Q2. Importantly, group sales were up in a high single-digit in September and, despite headwinds from the newly-imposed lockdowns, management has reiterated its full-year guidance on the back of the bette
Sonova has reiterated its mid-term growth strategy and financial targets. On the hearing aid wholesale side, the recovery has been faster than expected and the new product launch, Paradise, will be backed by robust commercial execution. On the retail side, store network optimisation and the omni-channel strategy will be at the forefront. The group will also focus on process improvements to generate cost savings. However, the recovery in the cochlear implants segment has been slow.
Benefiting from a faster than expected improvement in the hearing aids marketplace – the elderly population was more comfortable in going back to retail stores than anticipated – Sonova has upgraded its outlook for H1 20/21. Good reception of its recently-launched product, Paradise, also played a part. Assuming no further major lockdowns and sturdy demand for Paradise, Sonova expects to return to growth in H2 20/21. With the market stabilising, Danish rivals Demant and GN Store Nord should also
With the gradual re-opening of the markets, Sonova’s sales run-rate reached 59% (in Q1) vs. 35% in April 2020. The recovery was faster than expected and management has guided for a 65-75% sales run-rate and single-digit EBITA margin for H1 20/21. Interestingly, Sonova has accelerated its structural optimisation measures – streamlining of the retail network and optimisation of non-customer facing functions could lower the headcount by 4-5% – and these initiatives have the potential to generate an
H2 was better than expectations, led by a sturdy show in wholesale, though retail and cochlear implants lost pace due to the ongoing pandemic. Higher volumes and ASPs bolstered EBITA, though these were partly offset by an increase in the allowance for bad debts. To ensure adequate liquidity, the share buy-back programme has been suspended and management has proposed a stock dividend. Given that Sonova’s sales run-rate for April 2020 was better than Demant’s, it could be a key beneficiary when ec
Sales momentum accelerated significantly in H1, led by broad-based growth across businesses. While wholesale benefited from the success of Marvel, the momentum in cochlear implants was driven by the MRI-compatible implant. Retail was fuelled by effective lead generation management and in-store execution, leading to the financial guidance upgrade for FY19/20. Nonetheless, higher than expected R&D and sales and marketing expenses and a new restructuring charge took away some of the sheen.
After a slow start, organic sales growth accelerated significantly in H2, led by the successful introduction of the next-gen MFA product, Marvel. Geographically, Europe was the principal growth contributor which overshadowed a weak show in the US. Profits also witnessed a substantial increase, benefiting from higher volumes, favourable ASPs and supply chain optimisation. For FY18/19, organic revenue growth came in at the higher end of the guidance range and profits were in line with expectations
CVS, one of the largest healthcare and pharmacy chains in the US, has announced the closure of all of its hearing centres in the US. With the over-the-counter/OTC hearing aids regulation set to become law in 2020, the requirement of hearing loss testing and support care would be done away with and thus there would be no need for an audiologist in the new set-up, the company said. Also, as lower-priced products would dominate the market, dedicating space in stores to audiologists won’t make much
Revenues were in line with expectations as a deceleration in sales growth in the hearing instruments wholesale business was offset by a pick-up in momentum in the retail division. However, declining ASPs, resulting from a mature product portfolio and stiff competition, suppressed profitability. With a new product now out in the market, ASP’s should improve and thus bolster the top-line as well as profitability in the second half of the year.
Impacted by challenging market conditions in the US wholesale (competition) and retail business (repositioning of stores), Sonova reported FY17/18 organic sales growth (+3.8%) below the mid-term target range of +4-6%. However, as the next-gen SWORD product (launch expected in Q4 18/19) is likely to be a game-changer, we anticipate an acceleration thereafter.
Though the H1 17/18 results were slightly below the street’s estimates, we believe that the launch of the 2.4GHz MFA platform should provide the much needed push to organic growth in the short term and help the company achieve its FY17/18 revenue and profitability targets. However, the mid-term growth prospects hinges upon the success of the next-gen product (likely in FY18/19) which is likely to address the shortcomings of the current product offering (ear-to-ear streaming and rechargeability).
Sonova’s H1 16/17 numbers (slightly below consensus estimates) confirmed continuing sluggishness due to AudioNova’s acquisition and an ageing product cycle. Sales grew at a slower pace of 5.5% in LC (6.7% in CHF) vs. 6.7% in H1 15/16 to CHF1.1bn, albeit slightly better than the 4.8% in H2 15/16. Even this growth primarily (3.5%) came from acquisitions, while the organic number languished at 2% (H1 15/16: 2.6%). On a segmental basis, Hearing Instruments (HI) and Cochlear Implants (CI) grew by 5.4
Sonova completed the acquisition of Europe’s second largest hearing aids retailer AudioNova (Amplifon remains the largest retailer in the hearing aids industry), earlier than expected, in September 2016. Sonova acquired AudioNova from the investment company HAL Trust, pipping the likes of WDM (William Demant) and Sivantos. The acquisition brings >1,300 retail stores spread across eight European countries, further fortifying Sonova’s hold on its distribution channel (as a reminder, with >2,000 re
Sonova’s H1 15 results were rather soft (consensus miss on profitability), dragged down by currency fluctuations (following de-pegging of the CHF) and weakness in the Cochlear implants (CI) business. Sales were up by 6.7% at LC to CHF1bn (+1.3% in CHF), with a strong performance from Hearing instruments (+8.7% at LC; +2.9% in CHF) being partially negated by the protracted sluggishness in the smaller CI segment (-11.2% at LC; -12.9% in CHF). Profitability fared worse with EBITA increasing by just
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In its first Litmus test after an ‘ambitious’ CMD in June 2021, the British giant has put up a decent show. The group witnessed recovery in the base business, particularly in vaccines which benefited from the sales of COVID-19 vaccine adjuvant. While the near term continues be tricky due to resurfacing COVID-19 concerns, encouraging trends on the COVID-19 vaccine / treatment front and growing HIV and oncology prowess should calm the nerves.
Companies: GlaxoSmithKline plc
ANGLE announced its second pharma services contract with an undisclosed drug development company, using Parsortix firstly to develop two custom CTC assays to look at biomarkers of DNA damage repair, for which it will be paid c.$0.4m and, secondly, if successful, to use these validated assays for longitudinal analysis in a subsequent clinical trial planned to start in H2 2022. The revenue from the first phase of the contract is expected to be recognised over a 12-month period. ANGLE also confirme
Companies: ANGLE plc
Cambridge Cognition has released a very encouraging H1 update which was well ahead of our forecasts and we have upgraded our FY21 revenue estimate by +19%. Order intake in the period leapt +74% to £8.6m (H1 2020: £4.9m), including £6.4m of previously-announced large orders, including two very significant wins totalling £3.6m. H1 revenues rose +50% to £4.5m, well ahead of DCe £3.8m and the group delivered Adjusted EBITDA of £0.2m vs DCe breakeven. Customer prepayments from contracts resulted in a
Companies: Cambridge Cognition Holdings Plc
In Q2, Astra reported strong sales growth momentum, (again) driven by a strong showing in oncology, diabetes drug Farxiga and COVID-19 vaccine sales. Although there were some issues in R&I and CVRM. More importantly, at cost vaccine sales and mandatory VBP discounts in China weighed on profitability. While the profitability strain can sustain in H2 as well, one should find confidence from the robust potential of core pharma offerings and the addition of high-growth and excellent-margin Alexion,
Companies: AstraZeneca PLC
A positive trading update for H1 2021 prompts full-year upgrades to forecasts and provides the basis for the introduction of FY 2022 forecasts. H1 2021 sales orders increased 74% to £8.6m; up from £4.9m in H1 2020, with a 50% increase in revenues and a £0.5m increase in adjusted EBITDA to £0.2m. A record contracted order backlog (up 36% or £4.0m from 31 December 2020 to £15.2m), which contains several large contracts with revenues to be recognised over up to six years, provides improved long-ter
Smith & Nephew reported consensus beating Q2 21 sales growth of 40.3%, thanks to a strong recovery in Orthopaedics (+43.4%) and ‘sports medicine & ENT’ (+50.9%). Regionally, growth was driven by the established markets (+46.8%).
For H1, revenue growth came in at 27.8% with a trading margin of 17.6% (+920bps, 40bps ahead of consensus). Guidance of 10%-13% top-line growth and an 18%-19% trading margin was re-iterated.
Following the broadly in-line performance, we do not expect any significant ch
Companies: Smith & Nephew PLC
What a difference a year makes - 12 months ago, the focus, quite understandably, was on the course of the pandemic and the lifting of the Lockdown (1) measures. For investors, it was the sustainability of the rally in markets seen since March 2020. Today, while we are still thinking about the lifting of lockdown measures, we are also concerned about two “old favourites” from previous decades. Inflation and the parlous state of public finances. The BoE has said that although CPI inflation rose to
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Doctor Care Anywhere Group's (DOC) Q221 update highlights that underlying revenue has continued to increase, driven by its expanding internet hospital and subsequent growth in diagnostic referrals. Management remains confident that FY21 revenue will be at least 100% above FY20 levels, implying a total revenue of at least £23.2m. Its balance sheet remains strong with net cash of £31.5m. The expected Q421 launch of its digitally integrated virtual and in-person primary care service with Nuffield H
Companies: Doctor Care Anywhere Group PLC Shs Chess Depository Interests Repr 1 sh
In our second edition of “Trend spotting” we note how in the last three weeks the defensive rotation trend has gathered pace and further evidence has emerged of the “relative fading” in the UK economy. However we now see early signs of the “risk on” trend starting to reassert itself in equity markets and we look at small cap laggards plus European exposure as ways to play this.
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SDL delivered a better than forecast H1, outperforming sales and AOP estimates. Revenues moderated by just 1% to £180.7m, with AOP up 1% to £16.3m. Increased demand from strongly performing verticals (Online Retail, Technology) has offset declining volumes from CV19 impacted sectors (Leisure, Travel, Automotive). KPIs continue to move in the right direction, with ARCV rising 7% y/y, and Linguistic Productive Utilisation stable at 67%. The Group delivered 60 new technology customer wins in H1, an
Companies: RWS Holdings plc
Warpaint’s interim results for FY2020 reflect the impact from Covid-19, with revenues of £13.5m, down 29% year-on-year (yoy) and adjusted profits from operations of £0.4m. Importantly, net cash has improved to £3.8m, up from £2.7m at the end of December 2019. We highlight the outlook statement, in particular, the recovering revenue in H2, the proposed interim dividend of 1.5p, together with an additional 1.3p to reflect no final dividend was paid for 2019, as signs of confidence from the Board.
Companies: Warpaint London PLC
Q4 trading has led sales to guidance being raised 8%. This has been driven by better than expected UK sales, incl. success with new customers like Wilko/Tesco. Some of the benefit is offset by a non-cash FX debit, but it still leads to an upgrade and higher net cash. As a result of successful trials in Tesco Express, W7 is also being rolled out to 469 more stores. This, and previously announced distribution gains, bodes well for incremental sales/PBT in 2021, and underlines the appeal of its val
With the audit process having been further complicated by the impact of the pandemic, ECO’s delayed results for the year ending Mar-20 and the half year ending Sep-20 have now been published. In headline terms, they are both very much in line with expectations. As previously discussed, trading suffered in H1-20 as the African Swine Fever outbreak in key market China impacted on demand. H2 was significantly stronger (60% of FY20 revenues) and that momentum has continued into FY21, with two signif
Companies: ECO Animal Health Group plc
AMTE Power, a developer and manufacturer of lithium-ion battery cells for specialist markets, announced its intention to seek admission to trading on AIM. Admission is expected to take place during March 2021. The Company intends to raise approximately £7 million by way of a placing of new ordinary shares in the capital of the Company. Timing TBC. Samarkand Group Limited, the cross-border eCommerce technology and retail group opening up the world's largest market for brands and retailers, intend
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