In a ploy to further popularize its Webster Veterinary Supply
Patterson Companies Inc.
) announced that the former will be known as Patterson Veterinary
Supply from January 1, 2013. It is a value-added, full-service
distributor of a complete range of consumable supplies,
diagnostic supplies, equipments, biologicals (vaccines) and
pharmaceuticals to companion-pet veterinarians in the U.S.
Patterson had historically reported in one operating segment
viz. dental supply. In July 2001, the company acquired the
veterinary supply assets of J.A. Webster, Inc., which
subsequently became a reportable business segment. Then, in
September 2003, it purchased AbilityOne Products Corp., which
serves the rehabilitation supply market, creating a third
Following the acquisitions, the company's business expanded in
the veterinary and rehabilitation supply markets, based on which
the corporate name of the company was changed to Patterson
Companies Inc. from Patterson Dental Company in 2004. Currently,
Patterson's operating segments include Patterson Dental, Webster
Veterinary and Patterson Medical.
Webster Veterinary is the leading distributor of veterinary
supplies to companion-animal veterinary clinics in the eastern
United States and is also the leading national equine distributor
in the country. Companion-animals include dogs, cats and other
common household pets.
Since 2001, Webster has been expanding its base consistently
utilizing Patterson's financial resources and technologies, as
evidenced by its increased annual sales from $150 million to $735
million in fiscal 2012. The company now holds roughly 21% of the
estimated $3.2 billion U.S. companion-pet veterinary market.
Based on the benefits that Webster received from Patterson,
management has taken the decision to formally include the
Patterson brand name in the Webster business. Given Patterson's
renowned brand recognition in North America, we believe that this
marketing initiative will allow the company to expand further
into the fast-growing U.S. companion-pet veterinary market.
Additionally, as a part of the marketing initiative, the
business unit will launch a new website in January 2013 with
advanced features and an upgraded online ordering provision.
However, of late, the veterinary services market has slowed
down due to a decline in consumer spending. Webster competes
MWI Veterinary Supply, Inc.
) in the veterinary market. We currently have a 'Neutral'
recommendation on the stock, which carries a short-term Zacks #4
MWI VET SUPPLY (MWIV): Free Stock Analysis
PATTERSON COS (PDCO): Free Stock Analysis
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