Dental Laboratories

Industry Profile Report

Dive Deep into the industry with a 25+ page industry report (pdf format) including the following chapters

Industry Overview Current Conditions, Industry Structure, How Firms Operate, Industry Trends, Credit Underwriting & Risks, and Industry Forecast.

Call Preparation Call Prep Questions, Industry Terms, and Weblinks.

Financial Insights Working Capital, Capital Financing, Business Valuation, and Financial Benchmarks.

Industry Profile Excerpts

Industry Overview

The 5,400 dental labs in the US design and fabricate custom dental prosthetic appliances, such as dentures, crowns, and bridges, for dentist offices and practices. Primary products include fixed and removable prosthetic devices, cosmetic devices, and orthodontic devices. Other products include sports guards and anti-snoring devices.

Foreign Competition

Domestic dental labs compete with foreign labs in China, Mexico, and India, which have specialized in offering low-priced partial frames and traditional crowns, especially zirconia-based restorations.

Competition from In-Office Technology

Advances in technology allow dentists to produce certain dental appliances in-office, replacing services from dental labs with their internal operations.

Industry size & Structure

The average dental lab operates out of single location, employs 7 workers, and generates $954,000 annually.

    • The dental lab industry consists of about 5,400 firms that employ 38,800 workers and generate $5 billion annually.
    • The industry is somewhat concentrated, as the top 50 companies account for over 43% of industry revenue.
    • Large firms include Glidewell Laboratories, Modern Dental Labs, Dental Services Group, and National Dentex.
                            Industry Forecast
                            Dental Laboratories Industry Growth
                            Source: Vertical IQ and Inforum

                            Recent Developments

                            Dec 1, 2022 - New Dental Education Program may Bring Change
                            • Columbia University has launched a new dual degree program at the intersection of engineering and dentistry that is expected to alter collaboration between dental practices and laboratories. Combining engineering and dentistry has already led to significant innovations. Digital dentistry such as intra-oral scanning, CAD-CAM, and 3D printing, have almost replaced dental impressions sent to dental laboratories for the construction of dental appliances and restorations. “We need more dental scientists who can adapt and translate basic science findings into dental health care applications,” said Columbia professor Sunil Wadhwa. The program is intended to help practitioners make the most of the synergies between dentistry and engineering and enable new treatment approaches.
                            • The dental implants and prosthetics market is projected to reach $14.1 billion by 2027, up from $9.9 billion in 2022, according to MarketsandMarkets. Growth is driven by the development of technologically advanced solutions, changing lifestyles and unhealthy food habits, growing consumer awareness of implants and prosthetics, and rising focus on aesthetics.
                            • Patients are back, the dentistry industry seems to be exceeding pre-pandemic levels, and industry consolidation has accelerated, according to financial and global information services firm GLG. All dentistry sectors, from dental practices through laboratories and back to procurement, are experiencing rapid consolidation, but the velocity of private dental practices consolidating into large group practices like DSOs has increased most over the last three years. Dental labs may have fewer, larger customers, as general dentistry is being done in increasingly fewer organizations. Dental practice consolidation is being driven by new technologies that enable large group practices to scale efficiently, the private equity community’s interest in dentistry, and the growth of a subset of dental entrepreneurs looking to start with small practices and grow them into smaller DSOs.
                            • A lack of skilled labor in the dental industry is also affecting dental laboratories. There was a 20% decrease in the number of dental technicians in the US between 2007 and 2017, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. The trend has since accelerated, especially during the coronavirus pandemic. Increasing costs and the need for highly efficient manufacturing processes capable of producing accurate and quality parts are other issues that dental labs are confronting.
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