This year, Ivoclar, one of the world’s leading suppliers of premium-quality, integrated dental solutions, proudly looks back on 100 years of company history. The family-owned business has had a fascinating past, shaped by innovation, continuous development and growth. As a result of its innovative spirit, the company has flexibly responded to the ever-changing market conditions and new requirements of customers and patients. The products and solutions that have been developed have allowed dental experts throughout the world to accomplish their work successfully for over 100 years.
The head office of the Ivoclar Group in Schaan (Liechtenstein) is considered to be a centre of innovation in the development of new dental products. Developing customer-focused solutions has always been a priority of the company. Diego Gabathuler, CEO of Ivoclar explains its winning formula as follows: “Ivoclar is committed to always adding value to its products and services and being a reliable and trustworthy partner to its customers”.
Pioneer and dependable partner in the dental industry
The Ivoclar Group’s history of innovation began in the late 1930s with the introduction and rise to popularity of the artificial teeth produced by the firm’s predecessor, Ramco AG. In the mid-1950s, the company launched the first glass-fibre-reinforced silicate material for filling anterior teeth. The significant innovations of the 1960s included Silicap and Silamat, which were both developed for direct restorative applications. Fluor Protector was introduced in 1975. It was the first dental varnish that protected teeth from caries and periodontal disease. One year later, the Programat P1 was launched. It established the basis for a generation of dental furnaces that would become an industry standard. In the mid-1980s, the company developed Heliomolar, the world’s first-ever radiopaque dental composite filling material. The Ivoclar Group continued to achieve numerous milestones in the development of new products. The goal of ensuring the best possible treatment for all patients was pursued with passion, determination, meticulousness and proficiency. Furthermore, the company was committed to identifying ways of heightening the efficiency of work processes and mapping out the individual steps of dentistry workflows.
In the early 1990s, Ivoclar revolutionized the dental industry with the invention of IPS Empress, the world’s first press ceramic system. This new method using a leucite-reinforced ceramic, which offered many benefits, opened up a new way of fabricating ceramic restorations. It would have a lasting effect on how highly esthetic, full contour single teeth would be produced in the future. At the same time, the foundation of the 30-year long success story of the press technique was established. “Our press technique has proven itself over many years of clinical use. The restorations fabricated with this technique show excellent fit, function and esthetics”, explains Dr Thomas Hirt, CTO of the Ivoclar Group. In 2005, Ivoclar launched the newly developed IPS e.max Press, a lithium disilicate press ceramic featuring impressive esthetic properties. It has everything that matters in dental laboratory technology: It enables restorations to be fabricated efficiently with a fine sense of craftsmanship and an esthetic eye – with the aim of improving the quality of life of patients.
Ivoclar went on to play another pioneering role, this time in CAD/CAM chairside dentistry. The development of the legendary “blue blocks” called IPS e.max CAD represented an industry-wide innovation. The material evolved into the best-selling glass-ceramic in the world, even to this day. This lithium disilicate glass-ceramic, which is exceptionally strong and esthetic, is used to fabricate full-contour restorations with utmost efficiency. Because of its suitability for a wide range of applications, it offers maximum flexibility. IPS e.max CAD is the product of more than a hundred years of experience, in-depth expertise and constant further development.
Over the years, Ivoclar also set numerous industry standards in the field of direct restorative dentistry. Tetric, the trailblazing hybrid composite resin, streamlined the direct restorative treatment process. The material is characterized by excellent physical properties and highly esthetic appearance. The Tetric line of products has grown consistently over time. Today, it comprises four fully coordinated direct composite filling materials. They combine proven quality with modern technology. In 2004, the company introduced OptraGate, the world’s first latex-free lip and cheek retractor, which is designed to help dental professionals save time and make the treatment process more comfortable for everyone involved. Additional state-of-the-art products that are a part of the “Direct Restoratives Workflow” considerably heighten the efficiency of the dental practice: for example, the Bluephase PowerCure unit – a high-performance polymerization device with a three-second curing function and integrated, intelligent curing assistant.
An eye to the future
Apart from having visionary ideas for conventional dentistry, Ivoclar realized at an early stage that digitalization would play a major role in the future of dentistry. In 2020, therefore, the company introduced the Ivotion Denture System, which revolutionized the way in which removable dentures are fabricated. This innovative system is a part of the company’s “Digital Denture Workflow”. It promises fast and predictable results in creating removable dentures using a single disc. The system is easy to use, highly efficient and produces exceptionally attractive results. These qualities have been highly appreciated by users and patients alike since the system’s introduction at the beginning of the present decade. Furthermore, Ivoclar developed the PrograWorld product range to ensure a smooth digital workflow throughout the entire treatment process: from digital impression-taking using the intuitively operated VivaScan intraoral scanner in the dental office to the digital fabrication of the restorations in the dental laboratory. To date, Ivoclar’s digital expertise covers scanning, milling, sintering and even printing.
The future is customer-focused
The Ivoclar Group is intent on maintaining its position as a pioneer and innovator in its specialized market. As we speak, the company’s R&D team is working at full speed to develop new products and solutions that will make the work of dentists, dental technicians and dental hygienists as well as laboratories as easy and efficient as possible so that they can fulfil their goal of giving their patients a healthy and attractive smile.
More information at www.ivoclar.com/100years
About the Ivoclar Group
The Ivoclar Group, headquartered in Schaan, Liechtenstein, is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of integrated solutions for esthetic, high-quality dental applications. In, 2023, the company proudly celebrates its 100-year anniversary under the theme of “A Century of Innovation”. The company’s success is based on a comprehensive portfolio of products, systems and services, strong research and development capabilities and a clear commitment to training and further education. The group of companies, which sells its products to around 130 countries, has 47 subsidiaries and branch offices and employs roughly 3500 people worldwide. More information about the Ivoclar Group is available at ivoclar.com.
Source: Ivoclar press release dated March 13, 2023