Abbott Laboratories ABT recently announced the receipt of CE Mark for its next-generation FreeStyle Libre 2 — a continuous glucose monitoring system. This system comes with optional glucose alarms which can promptly alert patients of hypoglycemia or hyperglycemia, at no extra cost. 

Abbott plans to soon launch the FreeStyle Libre 2 system on a rolling basis throughout Europe. With additional features, we expect this launch to help the company expand its customer base and boost top-line contributions from the Diabetes unit.

Market Potential

Per a report by Mordor Intelligence, the global market for diabetes care devices is expected to reach a value of $30.25 billion by 2021, at a CAGR of 5.93%. Considering the huge potential of the market, we believe the latest development will help Abbott gain traction in this space.

Progress Within Diabetes Business

There have been a slew of developments within the Diabetics business of Abbott. We are upbeat about the recent reimbursement approval of FreeStyle Libre Flash Glucose Monitoring System in the United States and the United Kingdom.

Plus, the company announced the receipt of Health Canada License and Japanese national reimbursement for the same. In May 2017, the company received full or partial reimbursement from the French Health Ministry for the product. With these positives in place, Abbott’s FreeStyle Libre system stands partially or fully covered in 21 countries.

Notably, these developments are expected to fortify the company’s hold in the Diabetes Care segment, which saw significant sales growth in the last reported quarter on continued consumer acceptance of FreeStyle Libre internationally.

According to the company, Freestyle Libre currently has over 650,000 patients across the globe. Abbott encouragingly noted that, it is adding over 50,000 patients each month and has gained about 150,000 in the first quarter.

Also, Abbott authenticated the use of its FreeStyle Libre glucose sensing technology for innovation and marketing of insulin delivery systems after it entered into a collaboration agreement with Bigfoot Biomedical.

Share Price Performance

Abbott has been gaining investor confidence on consistently positive results. Over the past six months, the stock has outperformed its industry. It has gained 24.1%, in comparison with the industry’s 20.8% rise.


Zacks Rank & Key Picks

Abbott carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

Some better-ranked stocks in the broader medical space are Intuitive Surgical ISRG, Amedisys, Inc. AMED and Masimo Corporation MASI.

Intuitive Surgical’s long-term expected earnings growth rate is 14.7%. The stock currently carries a Zacks Rank of 2 (Buy).

Amedisys’ long-term expected earnings growth rate is 19.4%. The stock holds a Zacks Rank #2 at the moment. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Masimo’s long-term expected earnings growth rate is 14.8%. The stock has a Zacks Rank #2 at present.

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