| TEL AVIV, June 17
TEL AVIV, June 17Skincare company Photomedex
is looking to leverage the dozens of new
clinics it gained across the United States in its recent
purchase of eye surgery firm LCA-Vision to boost revenue from
its skin disease treatments.
Photomedex, which is dual listed in Tel Aviv and on Nasdaq,
spent $106 million to buy LCA-Vision, formally listed on Nasdaq,
whose stockholders approved the deal last month.
That could be seen as a discount, said Dolev Rafaeli, chief
executive of Photomedex, since the deal happened in a tough
economy when laser eye surgeries were at a low.
There were about half the number of eye surgeries last year
as there was before markets were hit by a global financial
crisis, he said. As the economy and consumer confidence bounces
back, he said there is no reason the numbers will not to return
to those levels as well.
The acquisition will also shift some focus away from what
has been the firm's main stream of income - medical devices,
like hair removal products that are sold to consumers for
aesthetic purposes. That sector brought $188 million in sales
"It is a cash cow. We control this market today. It is not
going to go away, but we can't make that market grow faster than
it grows today," Rafaeli told Reuters in an interview.
Photomedex's products and services for treating skin
diseases, like psoriasis, which are used by physicians, have
been a smaller, though growing, generator of revenue.
The acquisition of LCA-Vision will boost this sector by
broadening the company's reach and by allowing cost cuts,
"(This) is a market we can control. And we will control, by
growing it, by adding more clinics, whether they are consignment
or owned clinics, and by combining the infrastructure that
support these two things," he said.
Photomedex had record revenue last year, up 2 percent to
$224.7 million, though its 2014 first quarter revenue of $50.1
million was down 12 percent from the previous year.