In this edition of stocktake, we look at three diverse Australasian healthcare companies, a sector which includes aged care, pharmaceuticals, and health insurers. Despite having strong underlying business and solid growth opportunities, many stocks that operate in this the sector globally have underperformed the broader market as investors have preferred defensive, higher dividend paying sectors. You may hold shares in these companies through your investment in the funds managed by BT Funds Management (NZ) Limited, the investment arm of Westpac in New Zealand, including the Westpac KiwiSaver Scheme, Westpac Active Series and the Westpac Premium Investment Funds. 



Metlifecare is one of New Zealand's largest retirement village operators, providing aged care facilities to over 5600 New Zealanders.  They currently own and operate 25 retirement villages throughout the North Island of New Zealand and have further developments at eight locations.  The company recently announced its profit results, revealing an increase in its annual profits to $91m, ahead of market expectations. With its share price lagging some of the other major players in this part of the world, the company remains one of the more attractively valued of the retirement village operators in our domestic market. 


Ebos Group

Christchurch based Ebos Group is one of Australasia’s largest suppliers and distributors of medical supplies and equipment to the NZ and Australian healthcare markets, employing over 2400 people. The company supplies pharmaceutical products to more than 400 Chemist Warehouse and My Chemist stores in Australia, as well as supplying hospitals, day surgeries, general practices and aged care facilities. Ebos represents recognised consumer brands such as Braun, 3M, Huggies, Johnson & Johnson, Nutricia and Roche. Ebos has enjoyed solid organic growth driven by strong sales in Asia, alongside making several acquisitions including of Symbion Health (pharmaceutical distributor) in 2013 and Masterpet (animal care product distributor) in 2011.

Fisher & Paykel Healthcare

Fisher & Paykel Healthcare designs and manufactures respiratory and acute care products used in ventilation and oxygen therapy, and products used for the treatment of sleep apnea. Fisher & Paykel is a global leader in many of the products they offer, with 99% of the company’s sales revenue derived from outside New Zealand.  The company is one of new Zealand’s largest, with a market capitalisation of over $11bn, and employing over 4000 people globally. Fisher and Paykel has a strong track record in its chosen segments and is expected to continue to experience attractive growth well into the future. The company recently announced earnings of $330m.