Smith & Nephew reports improved Q3 and names new chairman

We have two pieces of good news to tell you about Smith & Nephew ($SNN) this week: The British device company has named a new chairman, and it has generated encouraging numbers for its 2013 third-quarter revenue.

First, let's address the changing of the guard in the chairman slot. Reuters reported that industrialist Roberto Quarta will take over the slot in April, once longtime chairman Sir John Buchanan officially retires, likely at the company's annual meeting. In the interim, the U.K.-based Italian-American businessman will join the company as a nonexecutive director effective Dec. 4, according to the story.

Reuters noted that Quarta is currently chairman of IMI, an engineering group focused on moving fluids; Clayton, Dubilier & Rice Europe, a private equity firm; and Rexel.

Meanwhile, Smith & Nephew reported nearly $1.03 billion in revenue during the quarter, a 5% hike over the previous year. Trading profit reached $222 million, a 10% increase. A lot of the improved numbers come with Smith & Nephew's 2012 acquisition of Healthpoint Biotherapeutics for $782 million to expand its wound-care device and therapeutic offerings. The company said it generated $331 million in revenue for its Advanced Wound Management division during the quarter, a 10% hike over $254 million booked over the same period last year.

Smith & Nephew also improved its performance with knee and hip implants, with revenue up 2% and 3%, respectively. CEO Olivier Bohuon said in a statement that new products and more investment in the sector helped the turnaround. As well, revenue jumped in emerging markets. But, he added, the weak European market and continued controversy over metal-on-metal hip implants continued to impact the sector overall.

Meanwhile, the company said its full-year outlook remains unchanged as a whole. Additionally, Smith & Nephew is continuing a $300 million share buyback program, with about half of the money spent as of the 2013 third quarter, the company said.

"Our markets remain tough, but through implementing strategic priorities we are meeting these challenges, investing where we see the greatest opportunities for growth, and successfully reshaping the Group for long-term success," Bohuon said.

The company has $1.5 billion set aside for M&A deals, Bohuon has said previously.

- read the release
- check out the Reuters story

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