Medical equipment maker West Pharmaceutical forecasts weak annual results

By Thomson Reuters Feb 15, 2024 | 6:11 AM

(Reuters) – West Pharmaceutical Services forecast full-year results below analysts’ estimates on Thursday after the company missed fourth-quarter revenue expectations, hurt by weak demand for its medical equipments used to make COVID-19 vaccines.

The company, whose sales have taken a hit in recent quarters on falling demand for COVID-19 vaccines and related therapies, expects headwinds to be more pronounced during the first quarter and less impactful in subsequent quarters.

“In 2024, we expect moderated organic sales growth as we manage timing of inventory management, especially with our largest customers,” West Pharmaceutical CEO Eric Green said.

Sales at the company’s proprietary products unit, which accounts for most of West Pharmaceutical’s revenue and makes equipment used to deliver and package treatments, rose 1.5% to $593.7 million in the fourth quarter, compared to analysts’ estimates of $597.4 million, according to LSEG data.

The company reported sales of $732.0 million, missing estimates of $739.5 million.

West Pharmaceutical forecast 2024 adjusted earnings per share between $7.50 and $7.75, compared to estimates of $8.79.

The company forecast annual sales in the range of $3.00 billion to $3.03 billion, below estimates of $3.22 billion.

On an adjusted basis, West Pharmaceutical earned $1.83 per share, compared to estimates of $1.78 per share.

(Reporting by Vaibhav Sadhamta in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta)