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Bio-Rad's Q4 Sales Increase 8 Percent

By a GenomeWeb staff reporter

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Bio-Rad Laboratories reported after the close of the market Thursday that its fourth-quarter revenues increased 8 percent, and 10 percent on a currency-neutral basis, led by a double-digit gain for its Clinical Diagnostics segment.

The Hercules, Calif.-based firm brought in total revenues of $533.7 million for the three-month period ended Dec. 31, compared to $495.1 million for Q4 2009. It easily beat analysts' consensus estimate of $514.5 million for the quarter.

Bio-Rad's Life Science segment posted a 1 percent gain in revenues for the quarter of $192.9 million, up from $191 million. The firm said that European sales "continued to lag in the fourth quarter as a result of weak economic conditions facing government-funded research."

Its Clinical Diagnostics segment had 12 percent revenue growth to $336.5 million, up from $305 million in Q4 last year, which included $15.3 million in sales from the diagnostics business of Biotest, which the firm acquired in early 2010.

During a conference call following the release of the results, Bio-Rad CFO Christine Tsingos said that the firm saw "specific strength in our real-time PCR and pre-cast gel product lines, quality controls, and blood-typing products."

Bio-Rad's net income for the quarter was $67.9 million, or $2.41 per share, compared to $37.9 million, or $1.35 per share, for Q4 2009.

The firm spent $45.3 million on R&D during the quarter, up from $44.5 million for the fourth quarter of 2009, while its SG&A expenses increased to $176.7 million from $163.9 million.

For full-year 2010, Bio-Rad had revenues of $1.93 billion, up 8 percent from $1.78 billion for 2009. The firm beat analysts' consensus estimate of $1.91 billion.

Bio-Rad's Life Science segment had 3 percent revenue growth for the year to $648.1 million from $631.5 million, while its Clinical Diagnostics segment reported full-year revenues of $1.27 billion, up 11 percent from $1.14 billion year over year. Excluding revenue from the Biotest acquisition, full-year sales for the Clinical Diagnostics segment increased 6 percent on a currency-neutral basis.

Bio-Rad's profit for the year was $185.5 million, or $6.59 per share, compared to $144.6 million, or $5.20 per share, for 2009.

Its R&D spending for the year was $172.3 million, up from $163.6 million year over year. Its SG&A spending increased to $635.2 million from $601.5 million.

The firm finished the year with around $913 million in cash, cash equivalents, and restricted cash, and $118.6 million in short-term investments.

For 2011, Tsingos said that Bio-Rad is estimating currency-neutral, organic revenue growth of around 5 percent. She said part of this forecast is based on growth for the life science business expected to come from new product introductions this year and growth in its diagnostics business in the mid-single digits.

In early Friday trade on the New York Stock Exchange, shares of Bio-Rad were up 1 percent at $110.54.

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