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UPDATE 1-Gerresheimer's targets in jeopardy over U.S. healthcare confusion
October 11, 2017 / 6:31 AM / in 6 days

UPDATE 1-Gerresheimer's targets in jeopardy over U.S. healthcare confusion

* Q3 sales 331.5 mln eur vs poll avg 339 mln

* Says 30 mln eur of revenue at risk

* Says delivering Q4 orders is a challenge (Adds more details on outlook, shares)

BERLIN, Oct 11 (Reuters) - German drugs packager Gerresheimer said its full-year sales and profit targets were at risk, with customers continuing to exhibit caution due to uncertainty over healthcare policy in the United States, the world’s biggest pharmaceuticals market.

Gerresheimer said there was a risk that revenue of approximately 30 million euros ($35.5 million) would not come in as expected in the fourth quarter, which would mean its missing its earnings target by about 10 million euros.

It said in a statement on Wednesday that risk “appears to be more likely than not at present”.

Gerresheimer had promised a pick-up in the second half of the year after trimming its full-year profit forecast when it published first-half results.

The company had then forecast full-year revenue of 1.4 billion euros, an increase of around 2 percent, and adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) of around 320 million euros, an improvement of roughly 4 percent.

“Overall, delivering all orders accepted for the fourth quarter of 2017 already presents a major challenge today,” Gerresheimer said.

U.S. President Donald Trump has promised to increase competition in the pharmaceutical industry without giving details, while promised healthcare reform has been delayed, leaving drugmakers uncertain as to how pricing and demand may be affected.

Trump said on Tuesday he likely will sign an order this week that is expected to allow Americans to buy stripped-down health insurance policies.

Third-quarter sales came in at 331.5 million euros, below the average estimate of 339 million euros in a Reuters poll. Adjusted EBITDA fell 3.6 percent to 77.6 million.

It maintained its targets for 2018, however.

Shares in Gerresheimer, which are down 8 percent this year to date and have underperformed the European healthcare index by 14 percent, were indicated to open 0.1 percent higher.

$1 = 0.8463 euros Reporting by Victoria Bryan and Georgina Prodhan, Editing by Michael Shields and Louise Heavens

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