Philips Medical Systems closed its North American dental imagingdivision in January, returning distribution rights and serviceresponsibilities for a panoramic x-ray unit to its manufacturer,Soredex of Helsinki. Soredex Medical Systems, the firm's U.S.
Philips Medical Systems closed its North American dental imagingdivision in January, returning distribution rights and serviceresponsibilities for a panoramic x-ray unit to its manufacturer,Soredex of Helsinki.
Soredex Medical Systems, the firm's U.S. subsidiary, will continueto market the Cranex panoramic system through dental dealers,but also plans to sell the system to hospitals and dental radiologyclinics, said president John R. Hogan.
SMS of Conroe, TX, was formed about a year ago to develop medicalsales of the Soredex high-end Scanora multidirectional, tomographicx-ray system.
Scanora, which sells for about $200,000 compared to $25,000for the panoramic x-ray system, is targeted at oral surgeons andcraniofacial implantologists (SCAN 1/17/90). SMS also sells aspecimen x-ray unit that complements Soredex mammography equipmentdistributed in North America by AFP Imaging.
"We are going to try to maintain all the dental dealersthat were in place (under Philips). But we will also offer thatproduct line to our medical dealers. There has been increasinginterest from hospitals in purchasing panoramic equipment fortrauma patients. Many dentists can't afford a panoramic (x-raysystem). They will not refer patients to another dentist, butthey will refer them to a hospital," Hogan said.
Some medical imaging dealers selling mammography systems underAFP have expressed interest in the panoramic unit, and SMS willmake it available to them as well, he said.
SMS has taken over the Philips relationships with 14 independentsales representatives who provide direct contact and support tothe dental dealer network in the U.S. and Canada. The firm hasalso hired Philips' dental technical support manager and is boostingits administrative staff, he said.
Philips' decision to close the North American dental divisionwas part of the company-wide restructuring and rationalizationprocess, said Janet Collins, director of corporate communicationsfor Philips Medical Systems North America.
"The dental business was not consistent with our distributionstrength in radiology and cardiology. Strategically, it didn'tfit with other company objectives," Collins said.
Philips will continue to sell an intra-oral product line througha joint venture formed with Villa Medical Systems last year. Manufacturingand worldwide distribution of that dental line is handled by theItalian venture, she said.