Exocad presents latest company news at press conference
DARMSTADT, Germany: CAD/CAM dentistry is an exciting field that is increasingly shaping the future of the dental profession. Exocad has made it its goal to expand the possibilities of digital dentistry and to provide its distribution partners with flexible, reliable and easy-to-use software. During a press conference on 12 March at Darmstadt’s science and congress centre darmstadtium, the German company gave an update on the background of its acquisition by Align Technology, its future orientation and current developments.
Located in the heart of Darmstadt, the darmstadtium provided a contemporary and inspiring setting for the event, which was attended by industry representatives and media partners. A luncheon started the afternoon and was followed by a panel talk hosted by Larry Bodony, president of exocad America. Taking part in the discussion were exocad chief commercial officer Novica Savic; Align Technology’s director of global product management restoratives, Christophe Dorian; exocad CEO Tillmann Steinbrecher; and Align Technology’s senior director for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, Vianney Battle.
News and highlights
Firstly, Steinbrecher summarised the newest technology and latest innovations by exocad. These include DentalCAD 2.4 Plovdiv, which is available now, and exoplan 3.0 Galway, which will be an upcoming product. The DentalCAD 2.4 Plovdiv release has 64 new features and 45 extended functions that make exocad’s DentalCAD software even more attractive for dental technicians.
With exoplan 3.0 Galway, the focus lies on removable dentures and advanced implant-supported dentures. The upcoming Galway release offers the possibility of creating guides on edentulous jaws using the dual-scan protocol. Virtual tooth extraction, anchor pin placement and sinus cavity recognition are additional new functions that make the software even more attractive for every dentist and dental technician. Steinbrecher announced that he believes that “digital dentures are one of the next big things in digital dentistry”. A general makeover is supposed to make the software as accessible and intuitive as a smartphone app.
Collaboration between exocad and Align Technology
Besides the product news, there was another important topic on the agenda: Align Technology’s acquisition of exocad. At the beginning of the month, it was announced that global medical device company Align Technology had signed a definitive agreement to acquire the privately held exocad Global Holdings for approximately €376 million ($418 million). Dorian explained that the collaboration between the two companies started three years ago with the seamless integration of Align’s iTero intra-oral scanners and exocad’s ChairsideCAD software. Now, just recently, at the Chicago Dental Society’s 155th Midwinter Meeting, Align and exocad launched the exocad Connector, which received very good feedback from the customers, according to Dorian.
The decision to sell was based on previous experiences with shareholders, who received a great return on investment. Steinbrecher announced that exocad wants to continue this success story with Align, and Savic added that the company aims to strengthen its position as a market leader in CAD software for laboratories. Battle outlined that two main motivators for the acquisition were the improvement of Align’s digital orthodontic workflow and the amplification of its position in the European market. “The potential is massive, and eventually, everyone will go digital,” he stated. Among the 345,000 dentists in the European Union alone, Germany shows the greatest market capability, having 70,000 dental practitioners, according to a survey by online portal for statistics Statista.
All parties stressed that the philosophy of the open software architecture of exocad will be continued, and exocad will remain autonomous. The exocad management remains on board. “We will continue our way as before and remain completely independent,” stated Steinbrecher.
A software demonstration and an opportunity to talk to all the company representatives rounded off the afternoon. Originally, exocad had planned to hold the second edition of its event Insights 2020 from 11 to 13 March. However, owing to the coronavirus outbreak, the meeting was postponed to 21–22 September 2020. It will still take place at the darmstadtium. The press conference was held to inform press and industry representatives of the newest developments. More information about Insights 2020 can be found here.