Greencross misses high expectations

The veterinary group slips after its earnings before tax and sales guidance comes in below analyst forecasts.

Veterinary group Greencross (GXL) has come under pressure this morning despite the company tipping another strong result in for the full year.

Greencross is forecasting a more than 27% uplift in revenue to between $105 million and $106 million for the year ended June 30, 2013, but notes that underlying earnings before interest tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) will not be growing as quickly.

EBITDA is expected to improve by up to 25.4% if earnings come in at the top end of management’s guidance of between $13.8 million and $14.1 million.

The guidance is short of consensus expectations. Analysts polled on Bloomberg were predicting sales of $107.5 million and EBITDA of $14.5 million.

The margin pressure could indicate that Greencross, which has been a market darling, is not able to squeeze as much synergies from acquisitions as it had before. Acquisitions have been instrumental to the group’s growth over the past few years, which in turn drove the stock to a record high of $5.75 two weeks ago.

The stock fell 9 cents, or 1.6%, to $5.60 this morning, which is still above the $5.40 average broker price target recorded on Bloomberg.

Greencross is part of the Uncapped 100.

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