Thermo looks to lab service unit to accelerate growth in 2012
After achieving strong growth in clinical trial logistics and packaging Thermo Fisher has rejigged its laboratory business to capture demand for outsourcing. Thermo Fisher expects the new unit, Unity Lab Services, to drive growth in the coming years.
“When you look at the [business it] represents…seven to eight per cent of our revenue and growing high-single digits type of growth”, Marc Casper, CEO of Thermo Fisher, told investors in a call following fourth quarter results.
Thermo Fisher officially opened the unit in early January by combining its instrument and equipment services with its asset management and outsourcing operations. Bringing together these assets will allow clients to have one contract for supply management, consumables, and other services.
“The ability to bring all these capabilities together is a real differentiator for us in the marketplace. We see this as yet another vehicle for accelerating our top line growth, not only in 2012, but well into the future”, Casper said.
Demand for clinical trial logistics and packaging services is also expected to contribute to growth in the coming years. The unit had “very strong growth in 2011”, Casper said, and the offering “is really resonating with these customers at a time when an increased productivity is critical to their success”.
Fourth quarter growth
In the fourth quarter double-digit sales growth helped Thermo Fisher increase its operating profit by seven per cent. The laboratory products and services unit’s revenues were up five per cent year-on-year but weakening demand from some sectors restricted growth.
Peter Wilver, chief financial officer of Thermo Fisher, said: “Similar to last quarter, this segment was most affected by the challenging conditions in our academic and government markets, which declined low-single digits in the quarter.”