Gradual hearing market improvements noted by Demant checked by continuing uncertainty


market conditions

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Orders are coming in and activity is increasing says hearing tech giant Demant as markets respond gradually to the opening up of societies, but uncertainty still clouds the crystal ball on the near-term financial outlook.

In its most recent update, the Denmark-based group Demant (parent of Oticon) has issued a cautious description of improvements—a revenue run rate (forecast based on past earnings data) of 50-60% against expectations of 30% at the beginning of May—and the group is confident of seeing "pent-up demand for hearing healthcare products and services materialise", that "may well spill over into 2021".

But widespread ongoing uncertainty about the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the hearing healthcare market has limited Demant's assessment to a bundle of hopeful data and a confessed inability to predict timing and magnitude of greater improvements.

The optimism remains grounded in Demant's view that "fundamental drivers of demand for hearing healthcare products and services remain unchanged, and we have not seen any signs of material changes in the users’ willingness to seek help and support during the gradual re-opening of society".

But the clouds gather when it comes to describing the current disparity of market conditions from territory to territory: activity level remains "very low" in the UK, while this varies from state to state in the US, with "much slower" increase in other channels, including VA (Veterans Affairs). Brighter news comes from Nordic countries, including Germany and Switzerland, where conditions have "improved significantly".

Demant's Interim Report 2020 is scheduled for publication on August 17, 2020. In the meantime, the group is still unable to provide a financial outlook for 2020.

Source: Demant (GlobeNewswire)