Essilor Posts Solid Third Quarter Results

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CHARENTON-LE-PONT, France— Essilor International (Reuters: ESSI.PA) announced yesterday that consolidated revenue for the nine months ended Sept. 30, 2012 totaled €3.75 billion. This represents a year-on-year increase of 15.9 percent increase, before the currency effect, exceeding the 12 percent to 15 percent growth target Essilor set at the beginning of the year. On a like-for-like basis, Essilor’s consolidated revenue grew 5.8 percent versus year ago.

Hubert Sagnieres, Essilor’s chairman and CEO, commented, “Essilor continues to implement its strategy of innovation in every market in response to the demand for better visual health. Following in the tracks of Optifog, and Crizal UV early in the year, the new Varilux S series progressive lens is being steadily deployed by our teams, country by country. The third quarter performance is a further illustration of our ability to diligently execute our action plans around the world and we remain confident in achieving our objectives for 2012.”

For the third quarter alone, Essilor posted consolidated revenue of €1.23 billion, a 4 percent year-on-year increase on a like-for-like basis. The company reported that a 7.1 percent contribution from acquisitions comprised a 2.5 percent gain from bolt-on acquisitions and a 2.0 percent increase from the consolidation of Stylemark. The rest came from the joint ventures that are now fully consolidated, as opposed to 50 percent in the third quarter of 2011. The currency effect, which added 7.1 percent to reported growth, primarily reflected the increase in the U.S. dollar against the euro, Essilor said.

According to Essilor, demand for its products remains brisk in North America. In the U.S., sales to independent eyecare professionals are still being driven by anti-reflective lenses, including Crizal UV, the company said. Sales to independent laboratories were particularly sustained over the period.

Growth was firm in Europe, with the exception of selected markets in Southern Europe, notably Italy and Portugal, and Essilor’s instruments division. In the Asia-Pacific and Africa region, all of the fast-growing markets, led by China and India, maintained their strong expansion. In Latin America, demand continued to rise in Brazil and especially Mexico, where revenue growth is being driven by volume gains and an improving sales mix.

Essilor said its equipment division continued to perform well during the third quarter. Demand for digital surfacing machines was strong in both North and South America, while the consumables segment continues to enjoy sustained growth. During the quarter, Satisloh opened a facility in China, comprising a sales and customer service office and a logistics center. Essilor also reported that its readers division had a strong quarter, thanks to the ramp-up of a major contract with a leading U.S. retail chain, strong demand in the sunglasses segment and the fast growth in international sales, particularly in Latin America.