SmileDirectClub to expand into Germany in 2020
NASHVILLE, Tenn., U.S.: The teleorthodontics company SmileDirectClub has announced that it is poised to enter the German orthodontics market. The U.S.-based company, which has courted controversy with its direct-to-consumer clear aligner treatment model, said that it will open multiple locations of its flagship SmileShops across the country in early 2020.
Germany is the richest and most populous member of the European Union, and SmileDirectClub said, in a December statement, that its entry into the country will further expand its “doctor-directed” clear aligner business in the economic bloc. The company said that its own research shows that close to 70% of Germans are avoiding orthodontic treatment owing to the costs involved and that it will offer clear aligner therapy for as much as 60% less than the cost of other malocclusion treatment options in the country.
Orthodontic treatment plans offered to German consumers “will be created and prescribed under the direct supervision of a German licensed dentist,” the company stated.
“We’re confident consumers in Germany will embrace the ability to have access to convenient, more affordable oral care,” Kay Oswald, president of the company’s international business, was quoted as saying. “With Germany known globally as a world leader in technology and innovation, we are committed to investing in the country and have ambitious and exciting plans for our future there,” he said.
Shipments up 46% in the third quarter
SmileDirectClub reported 106,070 unique shipments of its clear aligners for the third quarter of 2019, representing an increase of around 46% on the 72,387 unique shipments in the third quarter of 2018. The gross sales price of each aligner shipped was $1,788, slightly up on the $1,773 it charged for each of its clear aligners in the comparable quarter in 2018.
The company had been under pressure to increase its sales and profitability in the final months of 2019 after it went public in September. At $180.2 million, total revenue for the quarter increased by around $60 million, or 50%, over third quarter revenue in 2018.
The company posted a net loss of $387.6 million for the period.