Elbit mulls disposition of GE windfall

September 2, 1998

Israeli medical imaging firm Elbit Medical Imaging may be on the acquisition warpath soon. The Haifa company is weighing its options for spending the windfall it received from GE Medical Systems of Milwaukee, which purchased Elbit's Diasonics Vingmed

Israeli medical imaging firm Elbit Medical Imaging may be on the acquisition warpath soon. The Haifa company is weighing its options for spending the windfall it received from GE Medical Systems of Milwaukee, which purchased Elbit's Diasonics Vingmed Ultrasound subsidiary for $228 million in April (SCAN 4/29/98). Elbit executives say their company is defining its strategic direction in healthcare and is investigating various technologies and activities that would complement its medical imaging operations.

Elbit recorded a one-time net profit for its first quarter of $91.2 million on the sale, and returned some of the money to its shareholders in the form of a $1 a share one-time dividend that was paid on June 30. There are about 21.5 million shares of Elbit stock outstanding, leaving Elbit with a substantial sum of money to put to use.

Elbit also released financial results for its second quarter (end-June) indicating that the company posted revenues of $83.1 million, up 5% compared with $79.2 million in the same period the year before. Elbit's Elscint subsidiary contributed $81.7 million in sales in the most recent quarter, with the rest coming from the company's Elbit Medical Services imaging services business. Elscint had revenues of $77.1 million in the second quarter of 1997. Elbit recorded net income of $3.1 million for the period, compared with $2.5 million in the second quarter of 1997.