Dentsply Int'l 4th-quarter profit slips 40 percent

YORK, Pa. (AP) -- Dentsply International Inc. said Wednesday that its profit shrank 40 percent in the fourth quarter, weighed down by costs related to its purchase of Astra Tech AB and other items.

Dentsply said its net income for the three months ended Dec. 21 fell to to $40.6 million, or 28 cents per share, from $67.8 million, or 47 cents per share in the year-earlier period. Excluding costs related to the Astra Tech acquisition, amortization costs, and other items, the company said it earned 51 cents per share in profit.

Revenue grew 30 percent, to $738 million from $568.2 million

Analysts, on average, expected Dentsply to report a profit of 52 cents per share and $721.4 million in revenue, according to FactSet.

Dentsply bought Astra Tech, which makes dental implants and urology products, for $1.79 billion in August.

The company's results were also hurt by an orthodontic supply outage and weaker European currencies during the fourth quarter, which made its products more expensive in European markets. However it said its results in most other businesses were strong.

For all of 2011, Dentsply said its profit fell 8 percent, to $244.5 million, or $1.70 per share, from $265.7 million, or $1.82 per share. Revenue rose 14 percent, to $2.54 billion from $2.22 billion.

The company said the global dental market will strengthen in 2012, and it expects new products and stronger demand in the U.S. to bolster its results. Dentsply International forecast an adjusted profit of $2.22 to $2.30 per share for the year.

Analysts expect $2.30 per share, on average.

Shares of Dentsply rose 40 cents, to $39.12 in midday trading.