- Sales amounted to EUR 5.3 billion, with comparable sales growth of 5%
- Comparable order intake increased 7% compared to Q4 2016
- Net income from continuing operations, which included a one-time non-cash tax charge of EUR 72 million, increased to EUR 476 million, compared to EUR 465 million in Q4 2016
- Adjusted EBITA margin improved by 140 basis points to 16.7% of sales, compared to 15.3% of sales in Q4 2016
- Income from operations (EBIT) increased to EUR 723 million, compared to EUR 693 million in Q4 2016
- Operating cash flow totaled EUR 1,202 million, compared to EUR 758 million in Q4 2016; free cash flow increased to EUR 948 million, compared to EUR 551 million in Q4 2016
- Sales increased to EUR 17.8 billion, with comparable sales growth of 4%
- Comparable order intake increased 6% compared to 2016
- Net income from continuing operations, which included a one-time non-cash tax charge of EUR 72 million, increased to EUR 1,028 million, compared to EUR 831 million in 2016
- Adjusted EBITA margin improved by 110 basis points to 12.1% of sales, compared to 11.0% of sales in 2016
- Income from operations (EBIT) amounted to EUR 1,517 million, compared to EUR 1,464 million in 2016
- Operating cash flow totaled EUR 1.9 billion, compared to EUR 1.2 billion in 2016; free cash flow increased to EUR 1,185 million, compared to EUR 429 million in 2016
- Proposal to maintain dividend at EUR 0.80 per share
Frans van Houten, CEO:
“2017 was a good year, as we continued the transformation of Philips into a focused leader in health technology and delivered on our improvement targets for the year. I am pleased that we delivered 4% comparable sales growth, an Adjusted EBITA margin increase of 110 basis points, and a strong EUR 1.2 billion free cash flow. We strengthened our strategic platforms through targeted acquisitions, introduced several breakthrough innovations, secured multiple long-term strategic partnerships, and we deconsolidated Philips Lighting as we decreased our shareholding to below 30%.
Philips’ performance in the fourth quarter demonstrates that we are gaining momentum. We finished 2017 on a firm note by delivering comparable order intake growth of 7%, and comparable sales growth of 5%, which was driven by our Personal Health businesses and Diagnosis & Treatment businesses. We achieved a strong Adjusted EBITA margin improvement of 140 basis points, driven by higher volumes, procurement and productivity savings, and increased free cash flow to EUR 948 million.
We further strengthened our portfolio through targeted acquisitions across the health continuum. The integration of these acquisitions is on track. I would like to highlight that the productivity improvements for Spectranetics are ahead of plan, and we successfully launched the Stellarex drug-coated balloon in the US. Furthermore, the integration of Volcano has been completed as planned. This business delivered high-teens comparable sales growth in 2017, driven by the strong performance of our diagnostic catheters, and we further improved gross margins by 10 percentage points in the past two years.
I am pleased that our organic growth initiatives are delivering tangible results, such as the strong order intake growth in our Digital Pathology Solutions business, the double-digit growth of our Sleep & Respiratory Care devices, and the continued success of Philips OneBlade. This revolutionary hybrid styler generated annual sales of more than EUR 100 million within 18 months of its launch.
We expect our markets to grow at 3–5% on a comparable basis in 2018. Combined with our strong order book, we are confident that we will deliver on our mid-term targets of 4-6% comparable sales growth and on average an annual 100 basis points improvement in Adjusted EBITA margin this year. Given the phasing of our order book, we expect improvements to be at the back end of the year."
In the fourth quarter, all business segments continued to deliver operational improvements and increased profitability.
In the Diagnosis & Treatment businesses, comparable order intake increased by a strong 12%, driven by North America and China. Comparable sales increased by 6%, reflecting high-single-digit growth in Ultrasound and mid-single-digit growth in Image-Guided Therapy and Diagnostic Imaging. The Adjusted EBITA margin was 90 basis points higher compared to the same period last year, mainly driven by higher volumes, procurement savings and other cost productivity.
The 6% comparable sales growth of the Personal Health businesses was driven by high-single-digit growth in Health & Wellness and Sleep & Respiratory Care. The Adjusted EBITA margin improved by 70 basis points, driven by higher volume and procurement savings, partly offset by investments in advertising & promotion.
In the Connected Care & Health Informatics businesses, comparable sales increased by 2%, with high-single-digit growth in Healthcare Informatics and low-single-digit growth in Patient Care & Monitoring Solutions. The Adjusted EBITA margin improved by 190 basis points, partly driven by procurement savings and other cost productivity. Comparable order intake showed a low-single-digit decline in the quarter as certain expected large orders were postponed to 2018.
Philips’ ongoing focus on innovation through organic and inorganic growth initiatives resulted in the following highlights in the quarter:
- As part of Philips’ new introductions to drive growth in Diagnostic Imaging, the company launched its digital MR Prodiva 1.5T system, which provides enhanced clinical performance and increased productivity. Philips also introduced the latest configuration of its IQon Spectral CT, which is optimized to support the needs of emergency and oncology care. Moreover, since the third quarter, Philips has been shipping Vereos, the world’s first and only fully digital PET/CT system, which is achieving market success due to its superb resolution, accuracy and efficiency.
- Philips strengthened its Radiology Solutions offering with the acquisition of Analytical Informatics. Their suite of workflow improvement applications complements Philips’ PerformanceBridge Practice to enable imaging departments to make data-driven improvement decisions. For example, Philips and Banner Health extended their partnership to include adoption of Philips’ PerformanceBridge Practice across Banner’s 28 radiology departments.
- Philips signed several multi-year agreements including a 10-year agreement with Children’s Hospital & Medical Center of Omaha in the US to help drive innovation in pediatric care. The company also won a multi-modality tender at the University Hospital of Schleswig-Holstein to provide medical equipment for the hospital’s radiology and neuroradiology departments. In addition, the German Armed Forces will adopt Philips’ Lumify app-based ultrasound solution as standard equipment for doctors and paramedics in emergency and rescue operations.
- Expanding its health informatics portfolio, Philips acquired interoperability provider Forcare in the Netherlands. Philips also partnered with US-based Nuance to bring Artificial Intelligence into radiology reporting by leveraging functionalities from Philips’ Illumeo and Nuance’s PowerScribe 360. Furthermore, Philips launched its new IntelliSpace Enterprise Edition for Radiology, providing radiology departments with comprehensive tools to increase efficiency and enhance throughput.
- In China, Philips partnered with Oranger, a service provider specialized in chronic respiratory disease management, and Health 100, the largest health examination organization in China, to provide integrated solutions for chronic respiratory diseases that cover screening, referral, treatment and recovery.
- To further expand its Population Health Management business, Philips acquired VitalHealth, whose highly complementary portfolio of advanced analytics, care coordination, patient engagement and outcome management solutions will support Philips’ commitment to deliver integrated solutions for care providers.
- As a driver of new care models, Philips teamed up with leading telehealth provider American Well to jointly deliver virtual care solutions around the world by embedding American Well’s mobile telehealth services into an array of Philips solutions, starting with the Philips Avent uGrow parenting platform, giving parents 24/7 access to professional medical consultations.
- Strengthening its leadership in patient monitoring solutions, Philips received FDA 510(k) clearance to market the IntelliVue X3 patient monitor, which provides continuous monitoring for the most critical patients during in-hospital transport. The IntelliVue X3 already had CE marking and was released in Europe in mid-2017.
Philips’ productivity programs delivered annual savings of EUR 483 million, ahead of the targeted savings of EUR 400 million. In the quarter, procurement savings amounted to EUR 81 million, led by the DfX program, while other productivity programs generated savings of EUR 52 million.
Philips continues to progress with its EUR 1.5 billion share buyback program, which was initiated in the third quarter of 2017 for capital reduction purposes. Details about the transactions to date can be found here.
Following the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) inspection of the Cleveland facility (Illinois) in the third quarter of 2017, Philips submitted its response to the inspectional observations for review by the FDA. In December 2017, the company had a constructive meeting with the FDA. Philips will continue to drive its Quality Management System improvement program, and provide monthly status reports to the FDA highlighting the progress in addressing the observations.
On October 31, 2017, a US Federal court formally approved a consent decree that had been agreed to by Philips and the US government, as announced in Philips’ press release on October 11, 2017. Philips is proceeding in line with the terms of the consent decree, which include inspections by independent auditors. As planned, Philips has resumed shipments of its HS1 AEDs globally, as well as consumables, accessories and service parts for all of its defibrillators. Additionally, the company resumed shipments of its FRx and FR3 AEDs to a key market outside of the US in January 2018 and aims to expand these shipments to other markets outside of the US in the remainder of the first quarter of 2018.
As of December 31, 2017, Philips’ shareholding in Philips Lighting was 29.01% of Philips Lighting’s issued share capital. As a result, Philips no longer has control over Philips Lighting and has ceased to consolidate Philips Lighting. The remaining interest in Philips Lighting is presented as an investment included in ‘Assets classified as held for sale’ in the financial statements of Royal Philips as from the end of November 2017. Philips’ net income in the fourth quarter included EUR 562 million related to Philips Lighting’s results in the fourth quarter until the date of deconsolidation and a deconsolidation gain, all of which is reported in Discontinued operations.
Philips Lighting will publish results for the fourth quarter and full year 2017 on February 2, 2018.
Conference call and audio webcast
A conference call with Frans van Houten, CEO, and Abhijit Bhattacharya, CFO, to discuss the results will start at 10:00AM CET, January 30, 2018. A live audio webcast of the conference call will be available through the link below.
More information about Frans van Houten and Abhijit Bhattacharya