Skip to main content

Abbott Q2 Diagnostics Revenues Rise 2 Percent, MDx Revenues Down 12 Percent

NEW YORK – Abbott today said that its Diagnostics business revenues grew 2 percent year over year in the second quarter, while its total revenues were up 3 percent.

For the three months ended June 30, the Abbott Park, Illinois-based firm reported overall Q2 revenues of $7.98 billion, up from $7.77 billion in Q2 2018, and up 8 percent on an organic basis. The company missed the consensus Wall Street estimate of $8.00 billion.

Abbott reported Diagnostics sales of $1.91 billion compared to $1.88 billion in the prior-year quarter. On an organic basis, excluding foreign exchange effect, Abbott's worldwide diagnostics sales increased 6 percent.

The firm's organic sales growth for the quarter excluded the prior year first and second-quarter results for a non-core business within US Adult Nutrition, which was discontinued during Q3 2018 and excluded the impact of foreign exchange.

Within Diagnostics, Core Laboratory Q2 revenues grew 4 percent to $1.17 billion from $1.13 billion in Q2 2018; Molecular revenues fell 12 percent to $107 million from $122 million in Q2 2018; and Point of Care revenues rose 4 percent to $145 million from $139 million in the prior-year quarter. The firm reported $484 million in Rapid Diagnostics sales, matching revenues for that business segment in Q2 2018.

Abbott said that core laboratory sales was led by above-market growth internationally, where it achieved continued strong adoption of its Alinity family of diagnostic instruments. Among its recent business highlights, the firm noted that the US Food and Drug Administration approved its Alinity s system for screening blood and plasma in July.

In Q2, the firm's molecular diagnostics sales were impacted by an unfavorable 3.1 percent effect of foreign exchange and decreased 9 percent on an organic basis. Sales growth in the quarter was negatively impacted by non-governmental organization purchasing patterns in Africa, the firm said.

Point-of-care diagnostics revenues in the second quarter increased 6 percent on an organic basis, driven in part by sales of the i-Stat handheld system, Abbott said.

The firm's rapid diagnostics revenue growth in the quarter occurred despite a negative 2.9 percent effect of foreign exchange and increased 3 percent on an organic basis led by infectious disease testing in developed markets and cardio-metabolic testing globally.

In Q2, the FDA cleared its Afinion HbA1c Dx, the first and only rapid point-of-care test approved in the US to aid in the diagnosis of diabetes, running on its Afinion 2 and Afinion AS100 analyzers.

The firm also received World Health Organization prequalification approval for its m-Pima HIV-1/2 VL viral load diagnostic test, a portable molecular point-of-care platform for use in resource-limited settings such as in sub-Saharan Africa.

On a conference call to discuss the firm's Q2 financial results, Abbott CEO Miles White said that the firm's new Alinity platform is expected to drive revenue growth in its diagnostics businesses for many years. The system "touches every part of diagnostics" and includes six different systems "all at various stages of rollout," he said.

The firm is seeing strong early adoption of its integrated Alinity ci clinical chemistry and immunoassay system within core labs in Europe. The system is furthest along the adoption curve among the Alinity systems that have received regulatory clearance so far, he said, adding Abbott is achieving high percentage sales conversions with customers already using its products and in winning new accounts. Overall, more than 3000 Alinity systems have been placed and are running tests, he said.

In January 2017, the firm received CE marking for the Alinity ci, permitting its marketing in European countries and other countries accepting the designation, and in October 2017, the firm received FDA clearance for the system.

Outside Europe, including in the US, China, and Southeast Asia, the firm is focused on expanding its menu and achieving additional clearances for its Alinity platforms, White said.

In Abbott's other businesses, Nutrition sales grew 1 percent to $1.88 billion; Established Pharmaceuticals fell 2 percent to $1.11 billion; and Medical Devices grew 6 percent to $3.08 billion.

Abbott reported net earnings of $1.01 billion, or $.56 per share, in Q2 2019 compared to $733 million, or $.41 per share, in the year-ago period. On an adjusted basis, EPS was $.82, topping analysts' consensus estimate of $.80.

The firm spent $577 million on R&D in Q2, a slight increase over $575 million in the prior-year quarter, and logged $2.43 billion in SG&A expenses, down 2 percent from $2.47 billion in the Q2 2018.

For 2019, Abbott raised its projected 2019 EPS to between $2.06 and $2.12 and adjusted EPS to between $3.21 and $3.27. The firm has previously projected a 2019 EPS of $1.95 to $2.05 and adjusted EPS of $3.15 to $3.25.

Abbott issued third quarter 2019 guidance for diluted earnings of $0.53 to $0.55 per share. Adjusted diluted earnings per share is anticipated to be $0.83 to $0.85.

The company said that its board has declared a quarterly dividend of $.32 per share, payable on Aug. 15 to shareholders of record at the close of business on July 15.

In Wednesday morning trading on the New York Stock Exchange, shares of Abbott were up more than 3 percent at $86.25.