COVID-19 contributes to strong Agfa DR revenues

2020 02 05 19 40 5727 Agfa Rsna 2019 400

The COVID-19 outbreak prompted strong revenue growth in the digital radiography (DR) business at Agfa HealthCare, the company reported in financial results for the first quarter. But sales in the company's Healthcare IT and Radiology Solutions segments were mostly flat for the period.

For the quarter (end-31 March), Agfa's Radiology Solutions segment posted revenues of 118 million euros, up 1.3% compared with sales of 117 million euros before currency conversion in the same period the year before. After adjustment for currency effects, revenues fell 0.4%. The segment's adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA) stood at 16.4 million euros, down slightly compared with 17.1 million euros in the first quarter of 2019.

Within the segment, the company said that sales of DR systems posted strong revenue growth as hospitals speed up their investments in mobile DR systems due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Mobile x-ray systems can be used to perform imaging exams at bedside, even in intensive care units, the company noted.

On the other hand, sales of computed radiography (CR) systems continue to decline, in particular as private practices in India, Latin America, and other geographies postpone investment in CR equipment. Agfa's hardcopy film business recorded a "limited revenue decrease," entirely due to the effects of COVID-19 on China and India as hospital visits not related to the outbreak were postponed.

In Agfa's Healthcare IT segment, revenues were 122 million euros, flat compared with 122 million euros the same period the year before. After currency adjustment, revenues fell 1%. Agfa completed the sale of its Orbis electronic health record in May, and the company said that its decision to focus on imaging IT "had a positive effect on profitability."

Adjusted EBITDA in the segment was 19.7 million euros, compared with 15.6 million euros in the first quarter of 2019. Agfa said that the imaging IT business is focusing on generating "quality turnover" in selected geographies and market segments, which resulted in improved profit margins over the previous year. But the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak could be visible in future quarters as hospitals are postponing investments in comprehensive software systems, the company noted.

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