The projections are looking great for the next earnings report from a well-known medical technology company. Analysts are calling for 16% sales growth and 26.3% earnings growth. Then again, this company has beaten analysts’ estimates by a hefty margin for the past several quarters. Which company am I referring to?
I’m talking about Intuitive Surgical Inc. (ISRG), which will release its fiscal second-quarter results after the market closes tonight, July 19.
Intuitive Surgical is in a business that sounds like it comes straight from a science-fiction novel: Surgical robotics. Luckily for patients around the world, this revolutionary technology is not only possible, it is becoming more and more integrated into everyday hospital use.
Intuitive Surgical got its big break in 1999 when it introduced the da Vinci surgical system. This system has everything built into it, including a surgeon’s console, a patient-side cart, a 3-D vision system and wrist instruments. It allows doctors to perform minimally invasive surgery with enhanced dexterity, precision and control. Better yet, this technology benefits the patients, who usually experience less pain, a shortened hospital stay, fewer infections and less scarring.
Nearly two decades later, the company has developed several models of this surgical system and offers a training program that brings surgeons up to speed on this technology. This neat system has steadily caught on in the healthcare industry; last year alone, the company’s systems were used in 875,000 procedures around the world.
Now is a great time to buy ISRG, because the company is on the cusp of another solid earnings report. Intuitive Surgical is known for beating analysts’ estimates, and I expect a repeat performance here. For these reasons, I currently recommend ISRG in my Growth Investor service–it is up 131% on the Buy List as I write this.
But I see further upside potential for ISRG, especially with tonight’s report. My expectation is that this will be a headline-making earnings report, so I consider ISRG a B-rated Buy.