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Inside Dental Technology
August 2017
Volume 8, Issue 8

Who’s Buying Who?

Mergers and acquisitions continue at a strong pace for 2017

Pam Johnson

The second half of 2016 and first half of 2017 have proven to have an economic environment still favoring mergers and acquisitions. What is driving this M&A activity? Tepid growth in the US economy has made it difficult for companies to grow organically and continues to push businesses to find inorganic strategies for increasing market share and growing top-line profits. Inexpensive debt and stronger equity values are powerful incentives for both buyers and sellers.

Whether the intent has been to diversify the company’s product line, deepen market penetration, inorganically grow market share, increase supply-chain pricing power, or eliminate the competition, manufacturers, private equity investors, and large dental technology groups have been busy. Let’s take a look at some of the more significant buyouts and mergers that took place over the past year.

Straumann Invests in Maxon Motor AG

Straumann Switzerland formed a joint venture company with Maxon Motor AG Switzerland. The new organization, Maxon Dental GmbH, with headquarters in Germany, is now 49% owned by Straumann with the option for Straumann to increase its share of ownership. Maxon produces implant systems via an injection molding process versus current subtractive manufacturing methods.

3D Systems Buys Vertex-Global Holding BV

To fuel its groundbreaking 3D printing platform Figure 4 and provide a strategic foothold in the multi-million dollar digital dentistry arena, 3D Systems purchased Vertex Global Holding BV, a leading Belgian manufacturer of 3D printing materials with worldwide distribution.

Zahn Dental Acquires CAP

In a significant move in June 2016, Zahn Dental acquired Custom Automated Prosthetics (CAP), a 6-year-old milling center and distributor of CAD/CAM equipment and materials with 60 employees and estimated sales of $30M in 2015. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Modern Dental Buys MicroDental

Modern Dental Group, a leading dental prosthetics device provider with laboratory positions in Western Europe, Australia, China, and Hong Kong, increased their footprint and market share with the purchase of MicroDental’s 21 laboratory locations in North America.

Dawson Academy Purchased by Investment Group

In March 2016, Valencia Capital purchased Dawson Academy, a dental education company providing dentists with post-graduate education designed to improve their practices clinically and financially. The sale closed in December of 2016.

Knight Dental Group Inc. Acquires TWO LABORATORIES IN NORTHEAST

In May 2017, Knight Dental Group, Inc. continued its acquisition strategy with the purchase of Connecticut-based York Dental Laboratory, Inc., one of the largest full-service dental laboratories in the Northeast. Earlier in the year, Knight purchased Rhode Island’s Precision Craft Dental Laboratory, strengthening Knight’s position in the Eastern corridor of the US.

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