June 2008




Ophthalmology sector to continue growth



Driven by an aging population, innovative technology and expansion into emerging markets, the eye care industry will continue to see growth, according to Citi Investment Research (New York), the Associated Press reported.

Analyst Amit Bhalla said the market itself is worth roughly $21 billion and the higher performance of the ophthalmology sector compared with the overall market can be attributed largely to robust market fundamentals that support long-term growth for the more diversified players in the space.

Bhalla said key eye care companies have outperformed the broader market by 8% over the last year, compared with a 7% slide in the Standard & Poor’s 500 index and added that the sector continues to trade at a premium compared with other health care sectors, the report said.

He reaffirmed Citi’s prior “Buy” rating on Switzerland-based Alcon (Fort Worth, Texas), and “Buy” ratings for both Allergan (Irvine, Calif.) and Cooper. Cooper, a Pleasanton, Calif.-based company is an emerging company, given its success with product growth and new product launches, Bhalla said. In March, the company raised its 2008 profit outlook, citing strong sales of contact lens and lens-related products, the AP reported.

The report said most companies will benefit from the convergence of positive factors, as an aging population increases demand, along with consumer needs for higher quality eye care treatments earlier in life.

The AP quoted Bhalla as saying, “We expect ongoing innovation to drive significant growth in the segment in particular for products that produce superior results, reduce complications or shorten surgical time.”

Source: http://www.forbes.com/feeds/ap/2008/05/12/ap4997439.html

Reported by: EyeWorld News Service

Ophthalmology sector to continue growth Ophthalmology sector to continue growth
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