- Published on 08 February 2022
Danish hearing giant Demant's announcement of a very strong 2021 performance - 27% organic growth from its own resources - brings more evidence of the overall strength of the hearing care market.
Despite the pandemic halting a steady upward curve reported pre-Covid by the world's major manufacturers, healthy figures have consistently been announced since audiology got over the first major national lockdowns. Signs of expansion from both Starkey and Sonova are other indicators of robustness and optimism.
Demant has now announced a full-year 2021 hearing aid sales figure of 8,980m DKK (approximately 1,206m euros), and a sparkling group FY 2021 revenue of 2,474m euros. For FY 2021, organic growth was 27%, which is in line with the outlook the group announced in August 2021. Demant's Hearing Healthcare segment grew by 15% in local currencies in H2.
“2021 was a great year for Demant. To our satisfaction, we significantly exceeded our original, ambitious expectations and met our most recent outlook for the year by delivering high organic growth – above the market growth rate in our core segment, Hearing Healthcare – and an all-time high operating profit," said Demant CEO and President Søren Nielsen.
The supremo of the Danish hearing tech group highlighted "the great success of our flagship hearing aids Oticon More and Philips HearLink and the individual counselling provided to users in thousands of hearing care clinics" among reasons for growth. And he delivered an upbeat forecast for the near future
“The positive development and further normalisation we saw on the hearing aid and diagnostics markets in the second half-year will carry over into 2022. We thus expect to see strong growth in our core business areas, Hearing Care, Hearing Aids and Diagnostics, which also performed well in 2021, and in 2022, we will resume sales of our cochlear implants, and we expect to see growth in Communications. All of this leads us to present ambitious targets for 2022.”
The continuing negative performance of Demant in hearing implants - down 13% in organic growth in 2021 - is caused, said Nielsen, by the cancelling of surgical operations in hospitals during the pandemic, but the forecast is for "Sales of new cochlear implants to be resumed in Q3 2022 and to be gradually ramped up."
A fall of 27% in growth in the group's communications business was attributed by Demant to "high comparative figures and a slowdown in sales that began in Q2 and continued into Q3". The forecast for communications in 2022 will run alongside hearing health, "both segments to gain market share in 2022, but Communications to realise double-digit negative organic revenue growth in Q1 2022 due to very high comparative figures," says Demant.