Eyecare specialist Optos was in the sights of investors yesterday after first-half profits at the Fife firm more than doubled.
Shares jumped 5 per cent to 176.25p as the group said it had added hundreds of customers for its retinal scanning products and gave a robust outlook for the year.
The Dunfermline-based firm said it was also making “good progress” on reducing costs relating to its Daytona scanning device, which was launched just under two years ago.
Since then, more than 2,000 have been placed with customers and the device now represents more than 30 per cent of the group’s installed base.
Chief executive Roy Davis said an ongoing efficiency drive was likely to deliver overhead savings of at least $4 million (£2.4m) in the next financial year. The consolidation of some operations could lead to “a few extra jobs” at its Fife base, where some 150 are employed.
Results for the six months to September revealed that profit before tax had risen to $1.6m from $700,000 a year earlier, though revenues were flat at just below $73m.
Davis said: “We expect a significant second-half weighting to our business. The visibility on our order book, coupled with an ongoing focus on reducing the cost of Daytona and improving operational effectiveness suggests we are well positioned to meet our expectations for the full year.”
Brokerage Cannacord Genuity maintained its “buy” recommendation and 231p price target, noting that Optos had “substantially stepped up” its clinical activities over the past three years.
“This increased clinical credibility is both important to drive sales of Daytona, but also in anticipation of the new product launches,” it added.