Cochlear Full-Year Net Income Climbs 19% on Demand for Nucleus 5 Implant

Cochlear Ltd., maker of the world’s best-selling hearing implant, posted a 19 percent gain in full- year profit on demand for its newest product.

Net income climbed to A$155.2 million ($142 million) in the 12 months ended June 30, from A$130.5 million a year earlier, Sydney-based Cochlear said today. Analysts projected profit of A$154.6 million, according to the average of nine estimates compiled by Bloomberg. Sales rose 6 percent to A$734.8 million.

Sales of the latest Nucleus 5 device and new implant software to be available toward the end of 2010 will support growth in the current fiscal year, Cochlear said. Unit sales of implants increased 13 percent in the previous 12-month period, led by the Nucleus 5.

“There’s no question that 2011 will be a good year,” Shane Storey, an analyst at Wilson HTM Investment Group in Brisbane, said by telephone. “It’s just surprising to not see guidance.”

Cochlear fell 2 percent to close at A$69.86 in Sydn\ey trading, compared with a 1.2 percent decline for Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index.

“The result was solid but it was largely expected,” said Andrew Goodsall, an analyst at UBS AG in Sydney. “I just don’t think that the results are going to draw out new buyers at this point” for the stock, he said.

New Products

Chief Executive Officer Chris Roberts said the Nucleus 5 will make up a majority of unit sales this fiscal year, and products in the pipeline will bolster growth in the longer term. He declined to give specific figures for this year’s profit and sales outlook.

“Maybe later in the year it’s an opportunity at the AGM to provide a little bit more flavor on what that guidance is,” Roberts said at a briefing in Sydney.

Cochlear, which generates about 90 percent of revenue in other currencies, said it made a gain of A$38.6 million related to foreign exchange last fiscal year.

Cochlear’s implants require a trained surgeon to install and help restore hearing to people with severe to profound hearing loss. A processor behind the ear picks up sounds and converts them into digital signals it sends to a receiver implanted in the cochlea, a hollow bone in the shape of a snail shell in the inner ear. That stimulates the auditory nerve and the brain perceives the signals as sound.

To contact the reporter on this story: Lena Lee in Singapore at llee42@bloomberg.net.

Press spacebar to pause and continue. Press esc to stop.

Bloomberg reserves the right to remove comments but is under no obligation to do so, or to explain individual moderation decisions.

Please enable JavaScript to view the comments powered by Disqus.