LIONVILLE, Pa. (May 1, 2009)—Medical components manufacturer West Pharmaceutical Services Inc. posted sales of $242.4 million in the first quarter of 2009, a 10.5-percent drop from the like period last year, the company reported.
Net earnings declined in the period as well, to $15.4 million from $26.4 million.
West's first-quarter results reflected broader economic conditions and other uncertainties that are more particularly relevant to healthcare, said Donald E. Morel Jr., the firm's chairman and CEO. The results for the first quarter and West's expectations for the year suggest slower near-term growth, with many customers looking for opportunities to streamline their supply chains, he said.
The company will continue to carefully monitor its backlog, defer capital expenditures where appropriate, and manage production capacity and discretionary spending closely, Morel added. West expects several of the factors that impacted first quarter results to improve as the year goes on, including raw material costs, pricing tied to contract anniversary dates, and currency, if the dollar is reasonably stable, he said.
West also revised its 2009 consolidated sales and full-year earnings-per-share estimates. Sales are expected to fall between $1 billion and $1.02 billion, while adjusted diluted EPS is projected to be in the $2.05 to $2.18 range.