By Danny Chan
If surgical placement of dental implants is a key growth procedure for your practice, you would no doubt be familiar with the modern range of internal connection (hex conical) implants and brands like Legacy and InterActive. These groundbreaking implant innovations were invented by the founder of Implant Direct, prosthodontist Dr Gerald Niznick. In 1982, he founded Core-Vent BioEngineering, offering a proprietary implant line that featured the internal hex connection. Following a name change to Paragon Dental Implant Company, this thriving enterprise was sold to Zimmer Dental. The original Screw-Vent design invented in 1986 was part of the sale and is still the backbone of Zimmer’s dental implant system 30 years later.
Implant Direct first hit the scene in 2006. What followed was a decade of explosive growth as Implant Direct changed the landscape of implant dentistry. Fueling this growth was an expanding Legacy line that underwent several successful and much-welcomed modifications. First, an aggressive thread feature was added to promote primary stability in the Legacy3. Following this were changes in breadth of platform sizes, diameters, and implant lengths. Finally, the revolutionary All-in-one packaging offering that maximize ease of ordering and minimize costs associated with ordering individual components. Each new product iteration solidified Implant Direct’s reputation as a global supplier offering a broad range of options to meet the challenges of many different clinical indications.
InterActive, the company’s internal hex conical connection implant system, also attracted a flurry of praise and admiration from clinicians all over the world, not least due to the system’s compatibility with Nobel Biocare’s conical connection prosthetics. These prosthetics feature a platform shifting healing collar that incorporates a concave transgingival profile to improve soft tissue aesthetics.
The meteoric rise of a high-tech implant system manufacturer did not merely draw interest from dental practitioners. With a string of innovations – that included Tapered Implants with Surgical Protocol and Selective Surface & Dual Transition Surface Treatments – and over 30 patents in implant dentistry, Implant Direct also caught the attention of large dental corporates. In 2011, Danaher, the parent company of KaVo Kerr, acquired a majority interest in the company. The Danaher Dental Platform is also home to other industry heavyweights like i-CAT, Pelton & Crane, Gendex and ORMCO. In 2014 they even acquired Nobel Biocare.
The perks that come with joining a $20 B Fortune 150 company goes beyond bolstered financial muscle, asserts Ian Still, Implant Direct’s Director of International Sales:
“The Danaher dental business continuously looks for ways to leverage our strong market position across multiple operating companies, to better understand the challenges facing dentists today and realize efficiencies that can be deployed to enhance our customer’s clinical and practice results.”
“One of the differentiating features of all Danaher businesses is their use of the Danaher Business Systems (DBS). DBS is a series of proven operational tools that help create and leverage efficiencies to fund further growth across the business. These additional resources can then be applied to R & D spending and investing in pioneering digital solutions that connect the different specialties of dentistry.”
Obviously, the benefits of corporate backing extend across cost efficiencies. Lean processes that include the industry’s only lights out 24/7 manufacturing offer myriad competitive advantages. More importantly, Implant Direct is poised to help implant practitioners face fresh challenges that come with delivering a technology-intensive and relatively new dental treatment.
Implant Direct has a focus on making sure products are manufactured to exacting tolerances through rigorous tests at their Manufacturing and R&D facility, located in Thousand Oaks, California. Despite heavy R&D commitments, Implant Direct’s robust wares continue to be offered at value price points.
According to Brendan Sheed, Regional Sales Manager, the company’s unwavering insistence on delivering quality within an affordable price range is giving other brand leaders a run for their market share.
“In today’s competitive marketplace, market share of the larger brands has either stalled or eroded. The value-minded companies, of which Implant Direct is the pioneer and global market leader, are enjoying strong growth in all market segments particularly in the corporate sector.”
The same cost benefits, Sheed says, apply to inventory management as well.
“The option of choosing an All-in-One packaging or the new Mount-Free with SMART abutment kit allows the practice to order 1 or 2 items instead of up to 8 individual items which vastly reduces the amount of stock on shelves and simplifies ordering whilst giving the clinician a pre-treatment, fixed cost.”
Delivering on the company’s “Simply Smarter” credo, Implant Direct’s All-in-One Packaging encompasses all the main components for a complete surgical and prosthetic solution. Their new mount-free packaging promises a streamlined and simplified system for ordering products by case workflow. The product’s surgical and prosthetic compatibility with Nobel, Straumann and Zimmer eradicates the need for expensive new kits. Meanwhile, customers can enjoy the superior initial stability, value added features, superior service and after-sales support straight away.
Implant Direct continues to push the envelope on R&D and manufacturing processes to deliver the ingenious products they are known for since their original implant invention first arrived on the world stage.
This article first appeared in Australasian Dentist