Edwards scores Q2 growth on heart valve sales

Edwards Lifesciences ($EW) reported 18.8% year-to-year growth for the second quarter, a jump the company attributes to strong sales for its recently launched heart valve.

The company's net income rose to $67.8 million for the quarter, up from last year's $58.1 million, and net sales leapt by 11.8% to $480 million. Edwards is crediting its Sapien transcatheter heart valve for the boost, as sales for the company's valve unit grew 71% over the last year. Edwards launched the device early this year, and, in May, the tech was approved for Medicare reimbursement, which helped drive its $61.4 million in Q2 sales.

Following the quarterly results, Edwards increased the low end of its 2012 earnings projection by 2 cents, now saying the company will make between $2.60 and $2.68 per share. The company projects that the Sapien valve will bring in sales of between $550 million and $600 million on the year.

Edwards' strong second-quarter showing contrasts with many of its competitors, who faced flat sales and declining revenues, and the company credits its innovation for the success. "Even in a challenging economic environment, we reported strong sales growth this quarter driven by the continued success of our U.S. transcatheter heart valve launch," CEO Michael Mussallem said in a statement. "As the number of U.S. Sapien procedures grows rapidly, we are extremely pleased with the continued high success rate being achieved."

Not all device firms were so fortunate in the second quarter. St. Jude Medical ($STJ) scaled back its 2012 projections after a 2% sales decline, and Johnson & Johnson ($JNJ) reported flat device sales and a 49% decline total revenues. Medtronic ($MDT), the largest devicemaker in the industry, is yet to disclose its Q2 results.

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