ROCHESTER, N.Y. - Bausch & Lomb Inc. said yesterday that its second-quarter profit dropped more than 80 percent because of slowing demand for lens-care products and lenses.
Net income fell to $6.8 million, or 13 cents a share, from profit from operations of $40 million, or 74 cents, a year earlier. Sales fell 9.1 percent to $414 million from $455.2 million.
In the second quarter a year ago, the company took charges of about $5.4 million, or 10 cents per share, to cover costs of its attempted buyout of Wesley Jessen VisionCare Inc. and the settlement of a lawsuit. These made net income $34.6 million, or 64 cents.
Bausch & Lomb said last month that its second-quarter sales and profit would be lower than it had forecast, the fifth time the company had reduced forecasts in a year. Analysts had expected a profit of 21 cents a share.
The third-biggest maker of contact lenses said it is struggling with declining demand for its lens-care products such as ReNu and Sensitive Eyes solution in the United States, and faces slowing growth in demand and more competition for equipment used in laser eye surgery to correct vision.
Bausch & Lomb shares fell $1.44 yesterday to close at $33.89. The shares have fallen 42 percent in 12 months.
Analysts said demand for the company's older lenses is slowing more quickly than new products can pick up the slack.
Rivals such as Cooper Companies Inc. and Ocular Sciences Inc. are more aggressive in marketing specialty lenses, such as toric lenses for astigmatism and colored and extended-wear lenses. Those are the faster-growing areas of the lens market, said UBS Warburg analyst Charles Olsziewski.