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DaVita HealthCare Partners Inc. (DVA - Analyst Report) reported second-quarter 2013 operating earnings of $1.84 per share. The results lagged the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.86, but were ahead of $1.53 per share in the prior-year quarter. Operating income amounted to $197.4 million, increasing from $146.7 million in the year-ago quarter.

Including contingent earn-out obligation adjustment, net income attributable to DaVita’s shareholders amounted to $254.4 million or $2.37 per share, compared with $95 million or 99 cents per share in the year-ago quarter. The year-ago results include loss from discontinued operations, transaction expenses associated with the acquisition of HealthCare Partners Inc., and a legal settlement related expenses.

Operational Update

Total revenue in the reported quarter increased 50.1% year over year to $2.87 billion from $1.91 billion. Top line lagged the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $2.89 billion.

Total operating expenses and charges climbed 41.1% to $2.35 billion from $1.67 billion in the second quarter of 2012.

DaVita provided dialysis services across 2,058 outpatient dialysis centers, serving approximately 163,000 patients during the reported quarter. Of these, 48 outpatient dialysis centers are located in 10 non-U.S. countries.

During the reported quarter, DaVita acquired 3 dialysis centers and opened 18 centers in the U.S. Additionally, the company acquired 8 dialysis centers outside the U.S.

Total U.S. treatments for the reported quarter came in at approximately 5.87 million or 75,230 treatments per day. This represents a per day increase of 7.6% over the year-ago quarter. Growth of non-acquired treatment in the quarter was 5%.

DaVita’s effective tax rate was 31.3% in the reported quarter. The third-party owners’ income attributable to non-tax paying entities impacted the effective tax rate. The effective tax rate attributable to DaVita shareholders in the reported quarter was 33.6%.

Segment Update    

Segment wise, total revenue from the Dialysis and related Lab Services segment came in at $1.92 billion during the quarter, against $1.76 billion in the prior-year quarter. Operating income for the segment surged to $404 million in the reported quarter from $291 million in the year-ago quarter.

HealthCare Partners generated revenues of $761 million and operating income of $81 million in the reported quarter.

Ancillary services and strategic initiatives generated revenues of $200 million, up from $158 million in the year-ago quarter. However, the segment recorded an operating loss of $7 million in the reported quarter, narrower than $21 million incurred in the year-ago quarter.

Financial Update

DaVita’s operating cash flow amounted to $307 million during the quarter under review, up from $202 million in the year ago quarter. Free cash flow in the reported quarter was $218 million, up from $111 million in the second quarter of 2012. Total assets at the end of the reported quarter were $16.5 billion, up from $16.0 billion as of Dec 31, 2012.

Long-term debt of DaVita declined to $8.23 billion from $8.33 billion as of Dec 31, 2012. Shareholder equity as of Jun 30, 2013 amounted to $4.28 billion, up from $3.92 billion at 2012-end.

Guidance

DaVita’s operating income guidance for 2013 was raised to $1.83–$1.93 billion from $1.8–$1.9 billion. Additionally, DaVita raised the operating income guidance for the dialysis services and related ancillary businesses for 2013 to $1.45–$1.50 billion from $1.40–$1.45 billion.

DaVita reduced the guidance for operating income from HCP to $380–$430 million from $400–$450 million. The company expects the effective tax rate attributable to DaVita shareholders in the range of 37%–38% for 2013. Moreover, the lower end of the operating cash flow guidance for 2013 was raised to $1.40–$1.50 billion from $1.35–$1.50 billion.

Zacks Rank

DaVita currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Other healthcare companies worth considering are Addus HomeCare Corporation (ADUS - Snapshot Report) – Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), LCA-Vision Inc. – Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) and AmSurg Corp. (AMSG - Analyst Report) – Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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