Essilor Reports Group 1.5 Percent Revenue Increase for 2013

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CHARENTON-LE-PONT, France— Essilor (Reuters: ESSI.PA) announced estimated consolidated revenue of €5,065 million for the year ended December 31, 2013, an increase of 1.5 percent over 2012. Excluding currency effects, sales increase 5.4 percent, according to Essilor.

Essilor said its 2013 revenue growth reflects a 2.1 percent like-for-like increase in revenue over the year, indicating an improvement in sales from the first half (up 1.2 percent) to the second (up 3.0 percent); a 3.3 percent impact from changes in scope of consolidation, attesting to the growing contribution of Essilor's acquisitions strategy from quarter to quarter; a 3.9 percent negative currency effect attributable to the rise in the euro against most of the company’s billing currencies.

Essilor reported that its lenses and optical instruments business units generated €4,505 million in revenue in 2013, up 1.4 percent over 2012, or 5.3 percent excluding currency effects. Revenue from North America accounted for €1,770 million, down 0.3 percent from year ago, but up 3.3 percent excluding current effects. Revenue from Europe accounted for €1,572 million, up 0.1 percent from 2012, and 0.6 percent without currency effects.

In 2013, Essilor introduced several major products, including the Varilux S series progressive lens, the Crizal UV anti-reflective lens and Crizal Prevencia, a lens that filters harmful blue light. The popularity of these products with eyecare professionals, combined with its assertive acquisitions strategy, enabled the company to strengthen its global positions during the year, Essilor said in a statement. However, organic growth was held back by “fierce competition and by a slowdown in the eyecare market in certain regions reflecting a challenging economic environment.”

Essilor estimated that fourth quarter 2013 revenue totaled €1,252 million, an increase of 1.8 percent, or 7.3 percent excluding currency effects. The company said its readers and equipment divisions performed well in fourth quarter, and North American operations enjoyed a recovery. However, sales were adversely affected by an unfavorable basis of comparison in the U.S., the loss of a major contract in Europe and a difficult economic and regulatory environment in France. Essilor’s overall performance was also impacted by delays in completing several acquisitions.

Essilor will release final revenue figures and the consolidated financial statements on February 27, 2014.