Business USA

Some of Patterson Dental’s partnerships include Under Armour Performance Mouthwear (pictured), ProDrive Systems and Sirona. The company is known as a trusted partner for services, supplies, equipment and technology. (DTI/Photo Patterson)
May 24, 2010 | Business USA

Inside Patterson Dental

by Dental Tribune

Part of the progressive, global Patterson Companies family of businesses, Patterson Dental is one of North America’s largest dental distributors, yet it has kept things simple by focusing on taking care its customers. Patterson serves customers through 88 branch offices and more than 1,500 representatives and equipment specialists, providing more than 90,000 products and equipment, software, technology solutions and services.

In earning the reputation as a technology leader, Patterson Dental introduces innovative solutions and makes key acquisitions, including Eaglesoft (1997), CAESY Patient Education Systems (2004) and Dolphin Imaging Systems/Dolphin Practice Management (2008), and guides dental professionals in every step of the technology integration process.

Recognizing that providing new technologies requires a strong support infrastructure, the Patterson Technology Center (PTC) in Effingham, IL, USA, serves 50,000 customers nationwide to help ensure a smooth transition to technology — from installation and training to support after the sale.

Aside from maximizing customers’ investment in technology, PTC research, development and technology upgrades enable practices to maximize efficiency and productivity through comprehensive integration packages with leading digital products.

“As the dental office continues to become more complex, highly trained technicians and responsive, dependable service are a must,” said Patterson Dental President Scott Anderson, who is succeeding James W. Wiltz as president and CEO of Patterson Companies. (Southwest Region Manager Paul Guggenheim was named Patterson Dental president, effective at the start of the new fiscal year.)

But Anderson also emphasized the importance of strong manufacturer relationships in driving value to the customer.

Patterson’s partnerships include being the exclusive provider of Schick digital X-ray products and the exclusive North American distributor of CEREC (chairside economical restoration of esthetic ceramics) technology from Sirona. CEREC enables dentists to create and seat high-quality, tooth-colored restorations in one appointment.

In August 2009, Patterson Dental announced its role as the exclusive distributor of Under Armour Performance Mouthwear, a new line of custom mouthpieces and mouthguards.

“Our mission is to drive innovation and bring new revenue sources to the dental profession,” Anderson said.

“The innovation that business partners bring, along with a customer-focused, service-driven commitment shared by Patterson, plays an integral role in building lasting relationships with customers.”

While the state of the global economy has affected businesses across most industries, Patterson has no intention of slowing down its investment in resources that benefit clinicians and their staff, according to Anderson.

Recent initiatives include an enhanced customer loyalty program, Patterson Advantage, which offers the unique opportunity for customers to reinvest in their practice using Patterson Advantage Dollars.

And prompted by the belief that all dental professionals should have the opportunity to position their practice for greater efficiency and productivity, Patterson made the decision to provide Eaglesoft practice management software free.

“Dentists also continue to invest in technologies such as CEREC and digital X-ray systems, which we believe is due to a focus on solutions with rapid rates of return that also help strengthen relationships with patients, as well as attract new patients,” Anderson said.

Technology’s direction for the future was further revealed at the IDS meeting in March 2009 in Cologne, Germany, with the prominent display of cone beam and other digital technologies.

Anderson said the new technologies featured at meetings several years ago, such as CAD/CAM and digital X-ray, have steadily gained market acceptance and are largely considered mainstream technologies.

In fact, Patterson Dental and Sirona recently announced that North American CEREC sales have surpassed the US$1 billion mark.

But regardless of what the exciting future of dentistry brings, Anderson said, dentists can count on Patterson to continue driving innovation to the dental profession with a firm grip on core values and growth rooted in strategies built on doing what’s best for customers.

“Executing on strengths, such as building customer relationships and taking care of customers in transitions that include CAD/CAM, digital solutions and remodeled or new office space, will remain essential in the years to come.”
 

Print  |  Send to a friend