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Sales & Earnings In Brief

This article was originally published in The Gray Sheet

Executive Summary

Zimmer/Centerpulse anniversary: Combined sales for Q3 are $700 mil., a 13% increase over the prior-year period, when the firms remained stand-alone entities. Little over a year after the Centerpulse acquisition, Zimmer CEO Ray Elliott stresses in an Oct. 25 call that an estimated loss of $50 mil. in sales dissynergies and distributor returns failed to hamper "sequentially solid" results in "global reconstructive procedure-and-mix growth." The company booked 16% growth in combined sales of reconstructive products in the third quarter, exactly level with Q2 figures. "If we adjust the second quarter for European distributor returns within the integration process, then [Q2] outgrew the first quarter, and a recently completed third quarter outgrew them both on a daily basis," he adds. To recover sales lost to dissynergies, Zimmer will implement "cross-training benefits which should accrue to our favor later in 2005." Elliott acknowledges that the firm's "toughest challenge" lies in Q4, because "to reach management's new range of $775 mil.-$780 mil. in sales, we now face a comparison to the fourth quarter of 2003 that had zero distributor returns." Zimmer's Q4 guidance is further challenged by a $9 mil. "overstatement" due to a miscalculation, the firm notes...

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