Dental Insider Blog

Observation and Commentary On the Dental Industry

Dentsply Stoops to All New Low!

Posted by dentalinsider on October 19, 2006

I just received a fax from a doctor that got a flyer in the mail from Dentsply today. Dentsply is so desperate to keep the business from the discontinued dealers that they have sent out this flyer listing the 28 “Current Dentsply Authorized Distributor Network” and a “One Time Buy 2, Get 1 Free” offer to the dentists. Here is a paragraph from the flyer.

“We know you trust the quality of Dentsply’s products. So we hope you’ll take advantage of this special one time offer. If you are currently using one of the distributors listed, we thank you for your partnership. If you are not currently using one of the approved Dentsply distributors, we welcome you to our network.”

Nothing like Dentsply kicking those discontinued dealers to the curb, they helped build Dentsply’s business, now they are trying to keep the business even though those discontinued distributors are still able to buy and sell Dentsply product until November 27, 2006. THIS IS IN VERY POOR TASTE and VERY UNETHICAL!

Here is the fatal flaw on Dentsply’s part…“Only authorized distributors are backed by Dentsply guarantees, Distributor list as of 9/23/2006.” I went back to the original letter from Dentsply and it was dated September 26, 2006 and states “After careful deliberation, we regret to inform you that your authorization as a Dentsply distributor will end effective November 27, 2006” What this says to me is that if your are not part of the list of 28, then you are not an Authorized Dealer even though you are an authorized dealer until November 27, 2006, according to Dentsply. It’s time for an attorney to look into this, there might be a case there.

So not only is Dentsply stabbing these discontinued dealers in the back, they are lying to the dental professional. I think its time for an all out assault on Dentsply. Take a moment and call or email CEO Gary Kunkle, (phone number and email below) and let him know that you will not tolerate his companies lies nor their unethical practices.


Gary Kunkle, Dentsply CEO – 800-877-0020 email –



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11 Responses to “Dentsply Stoops to All New Low!”

  1. Anonymous said

    As a salesperson for one of the “authorized dealers” I think you are being a little bit extreme. This is a business decision and it is part of the modern economic world. no one is trying to be malicious.

    The smaller suppliers will face these types of exclusions and Dentsply won’t be the last company to do this.

    I think dentists need to wake up to the 2000’s in both the ignorance to technology and the revision of the rules of business.
    It’s a new and changing era.

  2. Anonymous said

    Response to the above dental salesperson: “Modern Economic World”, my ass! I would be willing to bet that this person will be knocking on the door of an “un-authorized dealer” within onw year! He/She is right about one thing though. Dentsply will not be the last company to do this………… and fail.

  3. Dental Insider said

    “I was initially intrigued by the concept of the Dental Insider blog. It appeared to offer outsiders a unique window into the dental supply industry by a seasoned professional. Instead it seems to have become a forum for personal ax grinding against Dentsply. I fear this will harm your future growth and credibility.”

    The Dental Insider is not a forum for personal ax grinding against Dentsply. It is for informing the industry, dental professionals and the public about the industry and its happenings. Dentsply just happens to be the biggest story to hit the industry in some time. I am trying to help the little guy take a stand against Goliath. What Dentsply is doing to the people that helped build the business to what it is today, is not right. Out of 56 posts since March, 6 have been in response to the Dentsply story, hardly an ax grinding forum.


  4. Anonymous said

    I’m gonna take the other side of this argument. Dentsply is realigning their business to cater to their core customers. Please keep in mind that they have not limited their distribution to just Patterson/Schein. THere are 28 distributors. Doctors have a lot of choices as to who they buy from. I would hardly say that doctors are backed into a corner, especially with so many exclusives and limited distribution deals out there.

    As for the dealers that are shut out, I’m sorry. This is just capitalism and protecting the rights of shareholders. You are probably too small, don’t do enough volume, and too costly for Dentsply. The large distributors account for the majority of the business. Dentsply is a smart company. They’ve done the risk/benefit analysis and this decision was made because it helps Dentsply’s business. Amid fierce competition in their markets, having their largest partners focused and happy is a win for Dentsply.

    Ultimately, there will be consolidation in the dental industry. You’ve already seen a lot of it and it will only continue. You can try to boycott Dentsply all you want. It won’t do a damn of good.

    Here’s how the dental economy works. The large distributors control which products dentists buy. Smaller manufacturers can’t compete. If they gain traction, then they get bought or start aligning with the big boys. The cycle perpetuates. Look at Dexis. Look at Gendex. Look at Progeny. Look at Icat. When will Ultradent be distributed by PDCO or HSIC? Sooner than you think.

  5. Thomas Nyquist said

    I am an outsider of the dental industry; I come from the investment world. I have found that blogs have a true grasp on a given industry and the dental insider is no exception. I often troll around message boards and blogs looking for a little bit of insight into an industry that I may be investing in or recommending to my clients. While doing research on Dentsply International (XRAY), I came across the dental insider blog. I have been very impressed with the quality and accuracy of the information on the blog. I find the postings on Dentsply International intriguing; you can’t find this insight in any balance sheet or through main stream media. If you haven’t read Hugh Hewitt’s Book “Blog”, I highly suggest you do. Blogs are the future of media. To the person that wrote about future growth and credibility, the dental insider already has credibility…Gary Kunkle, CEO of Dentsply International, took his phone call and answered his questions.

    Thomas Nyquist
    Multi Financial Corp.

  6. Anonymous said

    The Dentsply decision was based on business rationale; unfortunately by business people that do not know anything about the dental industry. This industry is built on relationships–the relationship between the dental professional and their dealer sales rep; the relationship between wholesale rep and the dealer rep. Because of this, Dentsply will fail in this endeavor. The small dealers are united and working together, The alternative manufacturers are very supportiveand see the incremental sales!

  7. Thomas Nyquist said

    I found this link while surfing today and it reaffirms a point that I made in a previous comment about blogs. Read it for yourself.

    Thomas Nyquist
    Multi Financial Corp.

  8. Anonymous said

    In all of this “David and Goliath” talk, has anyone really considered the growth factor of the suppliers that were cut?

    Mr. Insider, have you asked these cut suppliers about how much they have grown the Dentsply business?
    Were these companies trying to grow the business, or were they happy with the status quo?

    Are the same dentists who are being “forced” to buy supplies from certain vendors also happy to keep their production at the same level year to year?

    Just like dentists who look to eliminate insurance to ensure a better bottom line and tailor their practices to patients that have the means to pay fee for service, Dentsply has every right to do the same.

    this whole big guy beating up on the little guy talk is really tired, thin, and narrow minded.

  9. Dental Insider said

    “Mr. Insider, have you asked these cut suppliers about how much they have grown the Dentsply business?
    Were these companies trying to grow the business, or were they happy with the status quo?”

    Three of the dealers that I spoke with had year over year increases of 8%, 9% and 11% according to Dentsply’s Dealer scorecard report dated 9/18/2006.

    Go Figure!


  10. Anonymous said

    Thank you for that info.

    That is however only 3 of 200 some suppliers that were cut.

    Additionally, 8,9,11% of what # ??

    I am not out to shoot your point down, but merely to flush out the true story.

    You have a very good site and it is very informative.

  11. Dental Insider said

    “That is however only 3 of 200 some suppliers that were cut.”

    Only 170 dealers were cut off and no one can actually provide a listing of the 170. According to Dentsply’s website, they list 56 dealers as of September 2006.

    “Additionally, 8,9,11% of what # ??”

    Year over year sales from all divisions of Dentsply, 2005 vs 2006 as of 9/18/2006.

    “I am not out to shoot your point down, but merely to flush out the true story.”

    Not sure what you mean by “flushing out the true story”. Lets see where we are on Nov. 1, 2007…I suspect that the small dealers will switch many of their customers onto competing products, ramifications of the data collection will hurt the remaining dealers especially PDCO and HSIC and XRAY will lose $25-$30 million in sales, thus affecting the bottom line. Wall street will not look kindly on that kind of loss and Kunkle will be gone leaving the next CEO holding the bag. Thats my prediction. We can check back here next year to see if it all holds true.

    Thanks to all for the comments and emails.


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