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17 Jan 2019 | Press Release

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Straumann Group set to enter clear aligner market in China

Partnerships and collaborations

The Straumann Group has accelerated its strategy to enter the world's second largest market for orthodontic clear aligners[1] by partnering with Tianjin ZhengLi Technology Company Limited (ZhengLi Technology), whose clear-aligner system has regulatory approval in China.

Straumann has obtained exclusive distribution rights in China for their aligners and will leverage its strong marketing, training, distribution and service capabilities to penetrate the highly attractive market. The two partners will collaborate to develop enhanced solutions in esthetic dentistry.

"The need for orthodontic treatment in China is huge and ZhengLi Technology provides us with convenient, affordable, high-quality, state-of-the-art clear-aligner solutions that we can commercialize immediately. We have the sales and logistics network to reach customers across the country, as well as the organization and infrastructure to provide training, education and customer service. Straumann also offers digital solutions, including intraoral scanning, 3D printing, and milling options to support dentists offering aligner, restorative and replacement procedures. With this and our in-house expertise in clear aligners we are in a great position to penetrate and expand the market successfully", explained Patrick Loh, Head of the Straumann Group's Asia Pacific Region.

Orthodontics - in great demand

It is estimated that some 300 million Chinese patients visit dental clinics every year, a figure expected to grow at 13-15% in the foreseeable future.2 Despite the lack of reimbursement, orthodontics are one of the most in-demand treatments, especially in urban and developed areas. Previously perceived as being for teenagers, they are increasingly popular among adults especially young professionals. Between 2006 and 2016, the percentage of adults with malocclusion and misaligned teeth who received orthodontic treatments rose from 10-20% to 30% and even 50% in more developed regions.3

Modern clear aligners have considerable advantages over conventional orthodontic treatments, and according to market intelligence and industry data, the clear aligner market is growing faster in China than anywhere else. In the next five years, it is expected to grow by more than 50%.1 With ZhengLi Technology, Straumann plans to cater for both moderate and complex cases, which are particularly prevalent in China.

Straumann's dynamic clear aligner business

The Group entered the clear aligner business in 2017 by acquiring ClearCorrect in the US. With international expansion as a key priority, it is launching ClearCorrect in Brazil and recently signed an agreement to supply one of the largest dental service organizations in Spain. Other countries will follow, pending regulatory approvals where applicable.

Apart from this, the Group has also partnered with Dental Monitoring to offer dentists and their patients a convenient smart-phone application for monitoring aligner treatment progress without visiting the practice. This service is expected to launch in China this year.

About ZhengLi Technology

Established in 2014, Tianjin ZhengLi Technology Company Limited is an innovative medical device company based in Tianjin city in China. It has over 80 employees and is investing in advanced technology to expand its existing production capabilities. Various private equity investors are among its owners, including Tianjin Venture Capital, Shenzhen Capital Group Co., Ltd, Sequioa, and SAIF Partners.

The core business of ZhengLi Technology is to provide total orthodontic clear aligner solutions to dental professionals and patients. ZhengLi Technology's high quality products have been delivered to leading public hospitals and chain clinics across China since 2016.

About Straumann

The Straumann Group (SIX: STMN) is a global leader in tooth replacement and orthodontic solutions that restore smiles and confidence. It unites global and international brands that stand for excellence, innovation and quality in replacement, corrective and digital dentistry, including Straumann, Neodent, Medentika, ClearCorrect, Dental Wings, and other fully/partly owned companies and partners. In collaboration with leading clinics, institutes and universities, the Group researches, develops, manufactures and supplies dental implants, instruments, CADCAM prosthetics, biomaterials and digital solutions for use in tooth replacement and restoration or to prevent tooth loss.

Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, the Group currently employs more than 6000 people worldwide and its products, solutions and services are available in more than 100 countries through a broad network of distribution subsidiaries and partners.

  1. Source: market intelligence and industry data.
  2. A golden age for China's dental and oral care market 2017-2021; DCCChina.org, 2017.
  3. Source: Commercial Opportunities in the Dental Care Market in China; KPMG China, 2016.

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