DJ HUGIN NEWS/Carl Zeiss Meditec defies the crisis in the first quarter of 2008/2009

DJ HUGIN NEWS/Carl Zeiss Meditec defies the crisis in the first quarter of 2008/2009

Corporate news announcement processed and transmitted by Hugin AS. The issuer is solely responsible for the content of this announcement. =--------------------------------------------------------------------- =------------- Revenue grows 25% year-on-year - Short-term outlook uncertain due to economic situation in a number of markets (JENA, 13 February 2009) Carl Zeiss Meditec made a good start to the financial year, despite unfavorable general economic conditions in a number of markets, and has managed to defy the effects of the weaker economy in the first quarter of 2008/2009. First-quarter revenue totalled EUR 177.9 million (1 October 2008 - 31 December 2008), compared with EUR 141.8 million in the previous year. This corresponds to an increase of 25.5% year-on-year. Almost all of Carl Zeiss Meditec's reporting regions contributed to this revenue growth, with the strongest drivers being the "Americas" and the "Asia/Pacific" regions. In the first three months of financial year 2008/2009 Carl Zeiss Meditec has shown that solid and sustainable earnings growth is possible, even in a difficult market environment. EBIT increased in the first quarter of 2008/2009 from EUR 14.0 million in the previous year to EUR 21.5 million. The EBIT margin was 12.1%, compared with 9.9% in the previous year. Consolidated net income after minority interest also improved, increasing to EUR 12.7 million in the first three months of 2008/2009, compared with EUR 11.6 million in the previous year. Earnings per share after minority interest thus improved in the first quarter of 2008/2009 from EUR 0.14 to EUR 0.16. "Despite a difficult market environment, Carl Zeiss Meditec made a good start to financial year 2008/2009. We significantly increased both our revenue and earnings from the previous year," says Dr. Michael Kaschke, President and CEO of Carl Zeiss Meditec AG. Revenue by business unit Revenue in the "Ophthalmic Systems" strategic business unit, which mainly deals in diagnostic and treatment systems for ophthalmology, increased by 39.8% ear-on-year, from EUR 63.8 million to EUR 89.2 million. A positive effect was had in particular by the relative strength of the US dollar and the Japanese yen against the euro, and the improvement in the USA compared with a weak first quarter the previous year. In the "Surgical Ophthalmology" strategic business unit, which mainly deals in implants and consumables for ophthalmology, Carl Zeiss Meditec generated revenue of EUR 19.3 million (previous year: EUR 18.8 million). This encouraging performance is attributable to the successful establishment of the intraocular lenses newly launched in the previous year. The positive development of revenue in the "Microsurgery" strategic business unit (formerly: Neuro/ENT Surgery) continued in the first three months of financial year 2008/2009. Carl Zeiss Meditec generated revenue of EUR 69.4 in this SBU (previous year: EUR 59.1 million) in the first quarter of 2008/2009. This growth was again driven by the innovative surgical microscopes OPMI® Pentero® for neurosurgery and OPMI Lumera® for ophthalmic surgery. The "Microsurgery" SBU thus accounted for a 39.0% share of revenue (previous year: 41.7%), while the "Ophthalmic Systems" SBU accounted for 50.1% (previous year: 45.0%); the "Surgical Ophthalmology" SBU accounted for the remaining 10.9% (previous year: 13.3%). Revenue by region The "Americas" region was once again the strongest generator of sales in the first three months of 2008/2009. Revenue in this region rose by 27.0% year-on-year to EUR 65.6 million (previous year: EUR 51.7 million). In addition to these encouraging sales, the recovering strength of the US dollar against the euro also had a positive effect. The region's share of revenue remained almost constant at 36.9% (previous year: 36.5%). The share of revenue generated in the "Asia/Pacific" region increased in the first three months of 2008/2009, from 20.0% in the same period of the previous year to 25.7%. This region thus generated revenue of EUR 45.7 million in the reporting period (previous year: EUR 28.3 million), corresponding to an increase of 61.4%, which is also attributable to dynamic growth in the Japanese market. Revenue in the "Europe, Middle East and Africa" ("EMEA") region increased by 10.8% to EUR 53.9 million (previous year: EUR 48.7 million). Positive influences came from sales of innovative diagnostic equipment, surgical microscopes and intraocular lenses. The proportion of revenue generated by this region decreased year-on-year from 34.3% to 30.3%. The proportion of Carl Zeiss Meditec's revenue generated by Germany as a regional market decreased compared with the same period of the previous year from 9.2% to 7.1%. "The positive trend in the first quarter once again highlights the advantage Carl Zeiss Meditec has with its wide-range and well balanced portfolio, as well as our Company's global orientation," continued Dr. Michael Kaschke. Short-term outlook difficult to forecast "Given the uncertain general economic conditions, it is difficult to make a reliable and concrete statement regarding the outlook for financial year 2008/2009. We will, however, continue to prove our innovative strength by expanding our portfolio, even at this challenging time, with the launch of new products. At the same time, we will further consolidate our efforts particularly in markets with short-term growth opportunities. Our objective remains to further improve our profitability, without neglecting important strategic investments," concluded Dr. Kaschke. =-- End of Message --- Carl Zeiss Meditec AG Goeschwitzer Strasse 51-52 Jena Germany WKN: 531370; ISIN: DE0005313704; Index: Prime All Share, TECH All Share, TecDAX; Listed: Freiverkehr in Bayerische Börse München, Freiverkehr in Börse Stuttgart, Freiverkehr in Börse Berlin, Freiverkehr in Börse Düsseldorf, Freiverkehr in Hanseatische Wertpapierbörse zu Hamburg, Freiverkehr in Niedersächsische Börse zu Hannover, Prime Standard in Frankfurter Wertpapierbörse, Regulierter Markt in Frankfurter Wertpapierbörse; www.meditec.zeiss.com Copyright © Hugin AS 2009. All rights reserved.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

February 13, 2009 00:33 ET (05:33 GMT)