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Varian Provides Courses in Russia

Zacks Equity Research

Leading integrated radiotherapy systems maker Varian Medical Systems (VAR) recently revealed that it is imparting high level therapy planning know-how to radiotherapy specialists in Russia, in the Russian vernacular. The company is providing the training at a center inside one of the country’s main cancer institutes, the Blokhin Russian Scientific Center of Oncology, in Moscow. The first training occurred in late May 2012.  

The center has provided the space to install ten terminals and the therapy planning software called Eclipse. It hopes to provide 10 courses per year with 9 students attending each session.  

For its part, Varian is providing all study material. It has also recruited a Russian instructor. Students are expected from both within Russia and regional nations such as Kazakhstan.

Varian noted that the government in Russia is developing the latest radiotherapy infrastructure to care for its growing cancer-ridden population. It is imperative that clinicians receive training on how to best utilize the company’s offerings.

Eclipse is the therapy planning software utilized by a large proportion of radiotherapy outfits. It is ideal for providing sophisticated radiosurgery and radiotherapy care such as image-guided radiotherapy (“IGRT”).

Varian is a leading manufacturer of integrated radiotherapy systems for treating cancer and a premier supplier of X-ray tubes for diagnostic imaging applications. The company operates in a technology-driven environment where success depends on the use of new technology, product development and upgrades. In the radiation oncology market, Varian competes with Accuray (ARAY).

Varian is poised to increase its market share in radiation oncology. It is currently enjoying a healthy demand for its coveted TrueBeam technology, which is meaningfully contributing to its net order oncology growth. Moreover, Varian enjoys a strong balance sheet marked by low debt and sizeable cash. The company uses a part of its healthy cash flows for share repurchases.

However, Varian competes with larger players in a technology-intensive industry. Its pool of potential clients is relatively small. Further, uncertainties stemming from health care reform and a still weak hospital capital spending environment across many developed countries, especially in Europe, are significant challenges.

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