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Life Technologies Boosted by Swine Flu

Life Technologies bests Wall Street targets and lifts its guidance, helped by sales of its H1N1 testing tools.



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Life Technologies

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, formed last year by the combination of biotech outfits Invitrogen and Applied Biosystems, said its quarterly results received a swine-flu boost.

The company, which makes tools used to identify the H1N1 strain of influenza, also lifted its financial guidance for the rest of the year in an earnings report released after the market closed Tuesday. When fall arrives, of course, many expect swine flu to make a comeback across the Northern Hemisphere, a troubling situation that would theoretically increase demand for Life's products.

In after-hours trading, Life shares jumped nearly 7% to $45.75 from the regular session close.

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CEO Greg Lucier mentioned Life's H1N1 product, but only in the context of the well-being of the human race.

"I'm particularly proud of the role we played in helping public health authorities around the globe quickly and efficiently respond to the outbreak of the H1N1 flu virus," he said.

"Our ability to provide a complete solution to our customers in this critical time underscored not only the value of this combination," Lucier went on, "but also the impact Life Technologies has today on the health and welfare of people around the world."

The company said its full-year 2009 per-share earnings will come in somewhere between $2.70 and $2.80, excluding any items. Analysts had forecasted EPS of $2.63.

Life also topped expectations in the just-ended quarter, reporting adjusted earnings of 79 cents a share, above analysts' targets of 66 cents.

Including items such as merger costs, Life earned 22 cents a share, it said.

Non-GAAP revenue, meanwhile, grew 2% to $839 million if compared with the combined operations of Invitrogen and Applied Biosytems a year ago.

--Reported by Scott Eden in New York.

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