Return to growth in 2020/21 financial year fuels good outlook from Sonova and reflects resurging hearing market



© Sonova

Switzerland-based hearing health giant, Sonova, has released generally sunny annual results for the 2020/21 financial year, with a forecast undampened by the early pandemic-related sales dip.

Despite sales declining by 6.8% in local currencies (10.8% in Swiss francs to CHF 2,602 million), the generalised April 2020 fall in activity was followed by swift recovery. One positive factor was the successful launch of the Phonak Paradise platform; another, Sonova’s strategic growth initiatives. But the group also points to the “market’s strong fundamentals”, and ˝expects consolidated sales to increase by 24%-28% and adjusted EBITA to grow in the range of 34%-42% in 2021/22, both measured at constant exchange rates.˝

This optimistic outlook mirrors the24%-28% forecast released this May by another hearing colossus, Demant. Good news for the market, and good too for Sonova shareholders, who saw their shares jump almost 9% after the Swiss group’s announcement, which for their ears included the music of a proposed dividend of CHF 3.20 per share (a payout ratio of 42%).

Following the initial Covid hit, the lifting of lockdown restrictions led to a market rebound and figures reflecting the gradual easing, says Sonova. Towards the end of the year, there was a boost for cochlear implant sales from existing and new customer interest in two new launches Naída CI Marvel for adults and Sky CI Marvel for children.

Not included in the outlook is Sonova’s acquisition of the Sennheiser Consumer Division, which is still to be finalised.

“Sonova has successfully navigated the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. We have sustained our positive momentum, outpaced the market and achieved strong sales and earnings growth in the second half-year,˝ said Arnd Kaldowski, CEO of Sonova.

˝This was supported by both the focused execution of our growth strategy and the benefits of our structural optimization initiatives. I would like to especially thank our employees, who have worked tirelessly to support our customers, to innovate and expand our solutions, and to improve our processes despite the challenges throughout the year. We are confident in a strong recovery and we are in an excellent position to continue to outperform the market,“ added Kaldowski.

Source: Sonova