Contact lens makers have come into focus in recent days in the healthcare arena. 1-800 Contacts
On Tuesday, the contact lens and eye care-product company reported a second-quarter loss of $0.01 per share, versus a profit of $0.30 per share in the year-ago quarter. Restructuring charges are largely responsible for pushing Cooper's quarterly results into the red. The company's total revenue actually increased by 7% on a year-over-year basis as its two primary business segments posted strong sales growth.
Two of the more promising developments for Cooper shareholders are the increase in popularity of single-use contact lenses versus traditional lenses, and the potential for the company's silicone hydrogel lenses. In the first three months of 2007, Cooper's single-use products grew 31% worldwide. Its U.S. revenue derived from this area more than tripled year over year. The convenience of single-use contact lenses, coupled with the recent recalls of multipurpose solutions by Bausch & Lomb
The company is preparing to launch new lines of hydrogel spherical and hydrogel toric lenses in the U.S. and Europe in the not-too-distant future. The company's focus in this area demonstrates its responsiveness to growing trends. Silicone hydrogel lenses accounted for 47% of new patient visits to contact lens practitioners in the U.S. during the first three months of 2007.
The outlook is fairly positive for Cooper shareholders for the remainder of the year. Management has confirmed its full-year earnings guidance of $1.55 to $1.90 a share, and the company could see a slight benefit from the developments that have unfolded at American Medical.
For related Foolishness, check out:
- Not Seeing 20/20 at Advanced Medical Optics
- Bausch & Lomb: How Much Is Too Much?
- An Eye-Opening Potential Acquisition
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