Pennwell web 90 122

The top 10 news stories of 2010

Jan. 1, 2011
We scoured the pages of Proofs, looking for the top news stories of 2010. We asked some industry leaders for their opinions, and looked back at what deals made the most "noise" at trade shows.

By Kevin Henry, Editor

We scoured the pages of Proofs, looking for the top news stories of 2010. We asked some industry leaders for their opinions, and looked back at what deals made the most "noise" at trade shows. Put all those things together and you have our list of the top 10 things that happened in the dental industry in 2010.

Think we missed something? Drop me a line at [email protected].

Philips acquires Discus

Royal Philips Electronics has agreed to acquire Discus Holdings Inc. Through this acquisition, Philips expands its oral healthcare portfolio, adding to Philips' globally leading Sonicare electric toothbrush business. Upon closing of the transaction, pending regulatory approvals and expected in the fourth quarter of 2010, Discus will become part of Philips' Consumer Lifestyle sector's Health and Wellness business. Financial details of the agreement were not disclosed.

"Oral healthcare is an important part of our strategy to enhance consumer health and well-being, and an important growth driver of our portfolio. Discus' professional tooth whitening business provides a strong foundation for growth in the cosmetic dentistry space and will strengthen Philips' position as a leading oral healthcare brand amongst dental professionals and consumers," said Philips Consumer Lifestyle CEO Pieter Nota. "Moreover, Discus' oral care products complement our existing Sonicare portfolio, further building our relationship with dental professionals."

Heraeus Kulzer to "push back" against grey market

Heraeus Kulzer, LLC, recently entered into an exclusive importation agreement with its parent company Heraeus Kulzer, GmbH, where it officially and legally acquired the sole rights as the exclusive importer of the Heraeus Kulzer branded dental products into North America.

"Essentially what this means is that we now have the legal backing to combat unauthorized or grey-market materials from entering the country through alternative routes," explained Chris Holden, president of Heraeus Kulzer, LLC. "Grey-market materials pose a threat to manufacturers, dental professionals, and even patients because of the lack of scrutiny on the quality of certain products.

"We understand the seriousness of the issue and the potential health threats tied to grey-market products. Above all, we want to ensure the freshness and superior quality of every product we offer, and we will continue to push back against this growing problem."

DenMat acquires Snap-On Smile® brand

DenMat Holdings, LLC, recently announced its acquisition of the Snap-On Smile® brand and all intellectual property surrounding it. Snap-On Smile will be produced exclusively by DenMat's LUMINEERS® Smile Design Studio, an ISO 9001 certified laboratory offering a comprehensive range of superior esthetic and restorative services.

The Snap-On Smile is a patented, removable custom appliance requiring no prepping, no injections and no adhesives, which simply snaps over a patient's natural teeth. Applications include using the Snap-On Smile as esthetic provisionals in implant cases, a vehicle for increasing facial height (vertical dimension), cosmetic removable partial dentures, and even as a long-term smile enhancement.

GSK purchases NovaMin Technologies

GlaxoSmithKline has acquired NovaMin Technologies for $135 million. NovaMin, made from the same bioactive material used in the most advanced bone regeneration material, according to the company's Web site, can be found in 13 products worldwide, including Nupro (Dentsply Professional), Topex ReNew (Sultan), and Soothe Rx (3M ESPE/Omnii Pharmaceuticals).

Schein launches Endovations
Henry Schein, Inc., recently launched Endovations™, a new business initiative dedicated to meeting the product and service needs of endodontic practitioners around the world. Endovations, which is part of Henry Schein's Global Healthcare Specialties Group, provides endodontic clinicians with a wide selection of innovative products and services to enhance clinical outcomes and increase practice efficiency and success.

"Dental specialists have special needs in the products and services required to operate successful endodontic practices, and we have created Endovations to meet this growing need," said Stanley Bergman, Henry Schein's chairman and chief executive officer. "We are eager to introduce exciting new technology-driven products and services to our endodontic customers, and with our increased focus in this area, also expect an increase in sales of the wide range of products we currently sell for endodontic treatments, including the innovative Twisted Files from Sybron Dental Specialties, among others."

SciCan involved in major merger

SciCan, a Toronto-based manufacturer of infection control products and solutions with subsidiaries in Canonsburg Pa., Augsburg, Germany, and Zug, Switzerland, has merged with dental manufacturer SycoTec (previously, EWL, a subsidiary of the KaVo Group located in Leutkirch, Germany) and French endodontic specialist MICRO-MEGA (Besançon). The three companies are being integrated under one common umbrella, but will remain independent.

SciCan will be part of this strong company alliance under the leadership of SycoTec's managing partner, Dr. Martin Rickert. Together the group will be one of the 10 largest dental equipment manufacturers in the world of products for the dental and medical markets.

Windent purchased

PracticeWorks Systems, LLC, a division of Carestream Health, Inc., and Healthsoft, Inc., jointly announce the purchase of the Windent business of Healthsoft by PracticeWorks. Windent is a leading provider of sophisticated oral and maxillofacial surgery and dental practice management software sold under the brand names WINDENT OMS, WINDENT SQL, WINDENT Enterprise, and WINDENT Platinum.

Windent's successful practice management system will expand and strengthen PracticeWorks' comprehensive array of practice management systems and digital imaging solutions. PracticeWorks will retain the product and industry knowledge of the Windent team to ensure continued support of Windent customers and further development of Windent products. Plans include augmenting the Windent support and development teams with the full resources of PracticeWorks.

Patterson to build new tech center

Patterson Companies, Inc. has announced plans to build a new facility for its Patterson Technology Center (PTC) in Effingham, Ill.

The Company has identified a potential building site for an 80,000- to 100,000-square-foot complex, more than twice the size of the current PTC (also in Effingham). The preliminary project schedule indicates construction could begin in late spring, with fall 2011 targeted as a tentative completion date.

Taking part in groundbreaking for the new Patterson Technology Center complex, being built in Effingham, Ill., are from left, Dave Sproat (president, Patterson Medical), Craig Kabbes (vice president of customer technology, Patterson Companies), George Henriques (president, Webster Veterinary), Pam Hemmen (director, Patterson Technology Center), Sean Muniz (director of facilities, Patterson Companies ), and Scott Anderson (president and chief executive officer, Patterson Companies).

The PTC provides proprietary software, digital technology, and call center support for each business unit (Patterson Dental, Webster Veterinary, and Patterson Medical), as well as select business partners.

"We are absolutely thrilled about building a new PTC facility, which will reinforce business objectives centered on driving value to the customer," said Pam Hemmen, director of the PTC.

Staff moved into the current facility in 1998, a year after Patterson acquired the Effingham-based dental software developer EagleSoft, Inc. The PTC workforce has grown from 30 to 330 specially trained professionals serving 50,000 customers nationwide.

Sirona breaks ground on Innovation Center in Bensheim

Sirona recently broke ground on its state-of-the-art Innovation Center at the Sirona campus in Bensheim, Germany.

The center will house the largest R&D team in the dental industry, a technology training center and laboratory, all in a modern, 8,000-square-meter facility.

"The Innovation Center represents a continuation of our investment in research and development and sets the stage for our ongoing innovation excellence," said Jost Fischer, chairman and chief executive officer. "Our commitment is underscored by our research and development investment of over $250 million in the last six years, or 6 to 7% of our total revenues.

The inauguration is expected to take place in March of 2011, to coincide with International Dental Show in Cologne.

Temrex acquires Cooley & Cooley assets

Temrex has acquired the assets of Cooley & Cooley, Ltd.

"We are pleased to add this company and the Copalite brand into our family of products," said Ethan Levander, president of Temrex. "Their cements and varnishes, as well as other products, are a natural complement to the existing Temrex and Rand products we distribute globally for restorative dentistry."

Cooley & Cooley, located in Houston, has manufactured dental products since 1933. Temrex, located in Freeport, N.Y., also acquired the J R Rand company in 2005.

So did we miss any big stories from 2010 that should've been among the "top 10" from the past year? Let Proofs know by dropping an e-mail to Kevin Henry, editor of Proofs, at [email protected].

And don't forget, you can keep up with the latest in the dental industry by checking out the official home of Proofs ...