‘IDS is the premier showcase for innovation in the global dental industry’

Oliver P. Kuhrt (left), Executive Vice President Koelnmesse, and Dr Martin Rickert, Chairman of the Association of German Dental Manufacturers (VDDI) are expecting approximately 1.900 companies to attend the IDS 2011. (DTI/Photo courtesy of Koelnmesse)
Feb 16,2011 | EUROPE


by Daniel Zimmermann, DTI & Jeannette Enders, DT Germany

The countdown is on: The IDS 2011 starts on 22 March. DT editors Jeanette Enders and Daniel Zimmermann spoke to Oliver P. Kuhrt, Executive Vice President Koelnmesse, and Dr Martin Rickert, Chairman of the Association of German Dental Manufacturers (VDDI) about latest trends, economic circumstances and additional exhibition space.

today international: Registrations for the upcoming International Dental Show in Cologne are in full swing. After the successful 2009 edition, how many exhibitors and visitors do you expect this year?
Oliver P. Kuhrt: We expect approximately 1.900 companies from 55 countries to attend IDS 2011. Due to the increasing participation figures, both the organizer and the VDDI are looking forward to replicating the success of the 2009 show where more than 100.000 visitors from all around the world came to Cologne.

A lot of manufacturers have released new products prior to IDS Cologne. Is this going to affect the number of visitors?
Dr Martin Rickert:
 I do not anticipate any effect as the IDS is the premier showcase for innovation in the global dental industry. You see, dental professionals have to deal with complex solutions and applications that go beyond the news value of common consumer products and, therefore, innovations for practice and laboratory do not lose their appeal once they have been released. The decision whether and how to incorporate new methods into our own businesses is based on how deep we are willing to look into it. Overall, IDS still offers the most comprehensive overview of innovations for dentists and dental technicians.

The last IDS saw an increased number of Asian manufacturers. Will we see any new country participations this year?
Oliver P. Kuhrt:
 According to the latest exhibitor survey there will not be any new joint country participations. The markets with the largest exhibitor count are traditionally G
ermany, Italy, South Korea, Switzerland and the United States. In addition, we will also be welcoming companies from countries like Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Bulgaria, China, Japan, Israel, Pakistan, Russia, Spain and Taiwan.

At IDS 2009, the focus was on implant solutions and CAD/CAM technologies. Will this trend continue in 2011?
Dr Martin Rickert:
 We expect a lot of new products and trends in 2011 but digitalisation will definitely be the forerunner. This field, ranging from high quality impression scans to milling processes of different, new dental materials, is increasingly becoming important.

Implantology has been a booming segment for years and smaller and shorter implants have been launched over time. Even teeth that show high levels of decay can now be restored to their former functionality for many years to come. In endodontics, the effective cleaning of root canals remains one of the most important topics.

In regard to new business models, the cooperation between laboratories, distribution centres and the industry comes into mind. Nowadays, the single-man laboratory can almost offer the same portfolio as laboratories with much large manpower. Digital imaging allows specialised centres to offer small practices the whole spectrum of diagnostic services.

What product segments are showing high prospects?
Oliver P. Kuhrt
: We experience growth in many dental fields which is basically a result of manufacturers extending and complementing their product offerings with promising new products and solutions. The most prominent segments will probably be dental implants, prophylaxis, dental hygiene, cosmetic dentistry and CAD/CAM. However, we also observed growth in the field of dental practice equipment and functional systems for dental laboratories.

The worldwide economy is recovering fast. Have you experienced similar developments in the dental industry as well as the trade show business?
Dr Martin Rickert: The steady demand for dental services by patients confirms that the willingness to sustain their health has not been negatively affected by difficult economic circumstances. Most people know that investments in their health are investments in their quality of life and, last but not least, in their own future.

Due to the recession, the US dental industry has been struggling recently. Do you think this could have an effect on the position of IDS as the world’s largest dental trade show?
Dr Martin Rickert:
 The undisputed position of IDS as the world’s leading dental trade show is a result of a continuing target-oriented strategy of the German dental industry and its partner Koelnmesse. The strong presence of foreign exhibitors and visitors is creating an atmosphere of global awareness that makes the IDS what it is today, an international dental market place that is independent of temporary or local economic developments.

Will the first day of the trade show again be dedicated to dental dealers and importers?
Dr Martin Rickert:
 Definitely! According to most exhibitors and international dealers I spoke to, the „Dealers Day” on Tuesday has been received very well in the past. Most industry representatives appreciate the fact that specialists are available non-stop for business contacts and negotiations during that day.

What else can be expected from this year’s edition of IDS?
Oliver P. Kuhrt:
 In addition to halls 3, 4, 10 and 11, we are going to open hall 2 with an additional exhibition space of 143.000 sqm this year. Due to this measure, all exhibition halls are now located next to each other and are easily accessible through the South, East and West entrances to evenly guide the stream of visitors.

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