Thursday 20 February 2020 8:41 am

Emerging markets help Smith & Nephew beat annual sales record

Improved underlying revenue growth of 4.4 per cent has propelled Smith & Nephew’s sales above $5bn (£3.8bn) for the first time in its history.

The figures

Underlying revenue growth for the year was up 4.4 per cent propelling sales above $5bn for the first time.

Underlying sales growth from emerging markets was 16.1 per cent while its sports medicine and ENT unit revenue grew 7 per cent.

Smith & Nephew’s full year dividend was up 4 per cent to 37.5 cents per share.

Why it’s interesting

The medical products maker forecast another year of revenue growth after topping annual sales expectations.

Smith & Nephew said its outlook for underlying growth of 3.5 per cent to 4.5 per cent in 2020 but assuming that the coronavirus outbreak in China would normalise early in the second quarter.

Sales were helped by higher demand from emerging markets and growth in its sports medicine unit.

Emerging markets, including China, have helped to drive growth as patient populations grow and medical expertise improves.

The company also announced it completed five acquisitions last year.

Shares were up 9 per cent at 8.30am.

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What Smith & Nephew said

Chief executive Roland Diggelmann said:

“The improved underlying revenue growth of 4.4% in 2019, the best for several years, has propelled Group sales above $5 billion for the first time in Smith+Nephew’s history. All franchises and regions meaningfully contributed to this record.

“At the same time, we’ve continued investing to drive mid-term growth, both increasing our R&D spend, and also bringing in innovative technologies and expertise through acquisitions.

“For 2020, our focus is on sustaining the positive momentum and our strategic imperatives remain the right path to value creation. Within these, we will focus on delivering a consistent and excellent customer experience, maximising the impact from our increased investment in innovation, and continuing to improve our operational agility and efficiency.”