(Updates with share repurchase details in third paragraph.)
Oct. 25 (Bloomberg) --Straumann Holding AG, the world’s biggest dental implant maker by sales, views the U.S. dental market as stable at best, Chief Executive Officer Beat Spalinger said in an interview.
“The whole discussion about sovereign debt is clearly influencing consumer confidence,” Spalinger said by phone today. “Consumer confidence is key for our business in terms of market growth.”
The company has started a share repurchase program of up to 100 million Swiss francs ($1143 million), Spalinger said. There is no timeframe for completion, he said.
Straumann earlier today reported a 5 percent rise in third- quarter sales in local currencies to 150.7 million Swiss francs. The strength of the franc against the euro and dollar cost the company 60 million Swiss francs during the first nine months of the year, it said.
Straumann still expects an operating profit margin for 2011 in the high teens, excluding an impairment charge related to business affected by the earthquake and tsunami in Japan. Straumann expects the market will grow in the low-to-mid-single digit percentage range this year.
--Editors: Jerrold Colten, David Risser
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