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VCA Antech Inc., which owns and operates veterinary hospitals and laboratories and sells premium and therapeutic pet food, said Friday that its third-quarter profit fell 25 percent as costs and expenses rose, missing analyst expectations.

For July through September, VCA Antech earned $27.4 million, or 32 cents per share, compared with $36.4 million, or 42 cents per share, a year earlier.

Excluding one-time items, VCA Antech earned 37 cents per share — 3 cents below the average estimate of analysts polled by Thomson Reuters, who typically exclude one-time items.

Revenue climbed 6 percent to $358.7 million, due mainly to an 8 percent rise in animal hospital revenue. Analysts were looking for $358 million in revenue.

The company also lowered its outlook for the full year, citing the still-sluggish economy. VCA Antech, which is based in Los Angeles, now expects a profit of $1.38 to $1.40 per share for the year, compared with an earlier forecast for $1.43 to $1.53 per share.

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