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Biotech Dental opens Industry 4.0 factory for its Smilers

Philippe Veran, president of the Biotech Dental Group. (Image: Nathalie Schüller)

Monday, 19 June, was a beautiful sunny day in Salon-de-Provence, when orthodontists, collaborators, partners, entrepreneurs and members of the press attended the inauguration of Biotech Dental’s Smilers factory, the world’s largest aligner production factory established by a European company. The factory is 3,500 m2 of cutting-edge technology, dedicated to production of Smilers aligners and offers on-site training through its Biotech Dental Academy. Up to 14,000 aligners can be produced there daily.

Like a growing number of companies pursuing sustainability, Biotech Dental has built the Smilers factory to be eco-friendly. There are 212 solar panels on the roof of the new factory to use renewable energy for as much as possible of the production. Via the company’s Biotech Dental Recycling support department, plastic discarded during aligner production is recycled—the only aligner manufacturer to do so! Biotech Dental’s Smilers cares programme recycles used aligners, collecting them from participating practitioners.

Philippe Veran, founder and president of Biotech Dental, spoke about the story of Smilers and took the guests through each station of the fully automatised and digitalised Smilers production chain. One of these is the thermoforming, cutting and laser marking station, where blue models are stored, each with a QR code identifying the patient case and allowing the thermoforming machine to choose the specific plastic and produce the aligners needed at the relevant treatment stage.

After the tour of the production chain, Veran and an impressive panel addressed the guests. He explained that becoming the largest aligner manufacturing plant in Europe was only possible because 20 years ago Biotech Dental had invested in 3D-printing technology. He said that the company is proud to be able to employ and shape young adults without training and that being able to transform and help the region he grew up in is important to him.

In this regard, Martine Vassal, president of the Aix-Marseille-Provence metropolis, the greater area in which Salon-de-Provence is located, praised the collective work of Biotech Dental and the region and acknowledged Veran for his commitment, humility and loyalty to his company, his city and the region, and society. Similarly, the mayor of Salon-de-Provence, Nicolas Isnard, acknowledged that the Biotech Dental Group is an important actor in bringing dynamism to and in developing the job market of Salon-de-Provence. Jean-Marc Zulesi, a member of the French national assembly, praised Veran, calling him an ambassador for France on an international scale and a man of conviction and passion committed to the region.

To conclude, Veran thanked many of the company’s partners, among them global dental distributor Henry Schein, with whom Biotech Dental is working strategically towards world-leading products in orthodontics and digital dentistry, for giving “us this amazing opportunity to put Biotech Dental Smilers, Salon-de-Provence and France on the dental world map”. The alliance is based on the shared values of innovation, commitment and respect. He also showed a video of support for Biotech Dental by French President Emmanuel Macron in which he expressed his belief in the company’s entrepreneurial journey and capacity to carry out projects based on industrialisation of innovation, creating jobs and bringing a better life to many.

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