By Anna Ringstrom
STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - Swedish medical equipment maker Getinge <GETIb.ST> reported a jump in second-quarter core profit and orders on Thursday as demand for ventilators and other life support equipment surged due to the still raging pandemic.
Getinge, one of the world's biggest makers of medical ventilators, is increasing ventilator production capacity as it expects its high delivery rate to continue into next year.
Adjusted operating profit before amortisation doubled to 1.22 billion crowns (£106.95) from a year-earlier 591 million, with the margin nearly doubling to 17.5% while orders jumped 17.5%.
"The high volumes, combined with the productivity measures in recent years, resulted in increased profitability, strengthened free cash flow and lower net debt," CEO Mattias Perjos said in a statement.
Sales at the division that includes ventilators, ECMO and other intensive care equipment jumped 44%. Getinge said it had had some production disruptions due to component supply shortages and sick leave but with little consequences for the business.
Handelsbanken analysts said earnings and order intake were higher than expected.
Getinge's shares rose 3% at 0830 GMT, taking their year-to-date rise to 10%.
Perjos told Reuters ventilator demand had peaked at high levels in the quarter while demand for life support equipment known as extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) therapy, and sterile transfer containers, was still high.
Getinge, however, did not provide sales guidance for the year, citing uncertainty caused by COVID-19.
Rival Draegerwerk on Tuesday said its full-year sales and profit would rise considerably this year, more than guided for earlier, sending its shares higher.
Getinge said the development of COVID-19 vaccines and drugs had boosted demand for its equipment for aseptic filling of ampoules, a still relatively small product category.
Perjos told Reuters he saw demand staying strong for the segment for a long time.
Hospitals have during the epidemic scaled back purchases in less urgent categories and Getinge said it expected a slow recovery for such products.
(Reporting by Anna Ringstrom; editing by Niklas Pollard and Jason Neely)