STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - Medical equipment maker Getinge said on Thursday first-quarter order intake and core profit would come in above market expectations as a global scramble to buy ventilators to treat COVID-19 patients lifted demand.
Swedish Getinge, one of the world's biggest makers of medical ventilators, said earlier this week it was ramping up ventilator production capacity this year by 160% to 26,000 units to meet demand spurred by the pandemic.
Quarterly order intake shot up 47% organically from a year earlier to about 9.45 billion crowns ($939.7 million).
Getinge, which makes products for surgery, intensive care, infection control and sterilisation, said operating profit before amortisation and items affecting comparability grew to around 660 million crowns from 369 million helped by higher volumes, operational leverage and positive currency effects.
Organic sales growth in the quarter was 3.8%. Getinge had earlier guided for full-year organic sales growth of 2-4% but said on Thursday the COVID-19 pandemic caused high levels of uncertainty as to the impact for the full year.
Shares in the rival to Germany's Draegerwerk, Swiss-based Hamilton Medical, U.S.-based ResMed and China’s Beijing Aeonmed rose 8% in early trade.
Getinge is due to publish its full quarterly earnings report on April 22.
($1 = 10.0569 Swedish crowns)
(Reporting by Anna Ringstrom; editing by Niklas Pollard)