Icon reports strong revenue growth in fourth quarter

Nasdaq-listed group has $320 million available for acquisitions

Fourth quarter turnover at Icon, the Dublin-based, Nasdaq-listed provider of services to the pharmaceutical and medical devices industry, grew by 15 per cent year on year, figures released today show.

The group had turnover of $345 million in the fourth quarter of last year, and $1.34 billion for the year overall, with the latter figure being a 56 per cent increase, year on year.

Net income was $33.5 million compared with $20.7 million last year representing growth of 62 per cent for the quarter.

Adjusted for acquisitions, fourth quarter revenue was up 10 per cent, said chief executive Ciarán Murray. He said the work and investment of the past few years had contributed to the group’s strong revenue growth over recent times, but this was expected to moderate in 2014.


However, he added, the revenue growth guidance of 6 to 10 per cent for this year was an assessement for the potential for organic growth. “It could be higher if we make more acquisitions,” he said, noting that the group had spent $300 million on eleven acquisitions since 2008 and currently had $320 million “sitting in the bank”. Any acquisitions during 2014 would increase the top-line figure for the year.

He said the work the group had been doing with the Smurfit Business School at UCD for the past few years on the development of its executive team has contributed to the group’s growth and success.

Earnings per share for 2013 were up 77 per cent year on year and an increase of 16 to 24 per cent is being given as guidance for this year.

Colm Keena

Colm Keena

Colm Keena is an Irish Times journalist. He was previously legal-affairs correspondent and public-affairs correspondent