(Adds revenue, CEO comment, sales details)
Jan 25 (Reuters) - Laboratory equipment maker PerkinElmer Inc on Thursday reported higher-than-expected fourth quarter sales and profit and issued an initial 2018 earnings forecast that surpassed Wall Street estimates.
PerkinElmer, which also makes neonatal and environmental testing equipment, forecast full-year 2018 adjusted earnings of $3.50 per share, while analysts were estimating $3.47.
Excluding special items, PerkinElmer said adjusted earnings were 97 cents per share, topping analysts' average expectations by 3 cents, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Revenue for the quarter rose 13 percent to $641.6 million with help from the recent acquisition of diagnostics company Euroimmun. That easily exceeded Wall Street estimates of $618.6 million.
"It was a strong finish to a very good year as we not only delivered solid financial results but also made meaningful strategic moves that have improved the growth and competitive strength of our businesses," Chief Executive Robert Friel said in a statement.
For the fourth quarter, the company posted a net loss from continuing operations of $38.4 million, or 35 cents a share, due to a charge related to U.S. tax reform. The company had a net profit of $62.3 million, or 57 cents a share, in the year-ago quarter.
Sales from the discovery & analytical solutions segment rose 9 percent to $448.2 million.
The diagnostics unit saw revenue jump 23 percent to $193.4 million, including the Euroimmun contribution. (Reporting by Bill Berkrot; Editing by David Gregorio and Phil Berlowitz)