Agfa HealthCare sales drop nearly 9% in Q3
The IMPAX cardiovascular suite from Agfa. Image Source: Agfa HealthCare  
Agfa-Gevaert has reported its third quarter results, in which its overall sales declined 6 percent to €741 million ($954.38 million U.S.), and sales for Agfa HealthCare also fell.

Agfa-Gevaert posted a net loss of €13 million ($16.75 million U.S.) in the third quarter of 2008, compared to a net loss of €15 million ($19.3 million U.S.) in the third quarter of 2007.

Agfa HealthCare said its sales decreased 8.8 percent to €291 million ($374.3 million U.S.) in the 2008 third quarter, compared year-ago results of €319 million ($410.36 million U.S.). As some hospitals are postponing their investments, the company said its economic slowdown is weighing on the business group's sales figures, mainly on IT sales. Agfa said that the strong Euro continued to affect the healthcare division’s competitive position in North America and the United Kingdom.

Imaging continued its market-driven decline, whereas the hardcopy segment performed well in the third quarter, according to Agfa. When comparing the imaging IT sales figures (RIS/PACS) with those of last year's third quarter, the company said that it “should be taken into account that a significant part of the revenues from the important contract with the British NHS organization was booked in 2007.”

Agfa HealthCare said it was able to further reduce its selling, general and administrative expenses by 18.2 percent compared to the third quarter of 2007, “but further efforts will be implemented to bring these costs to a more competitive level,” according to the company. On top of the weaker sales, the group said its “profitability was affected by the high silver costs, as approximately half of HealthCare's sales still comes from film products.”