Improved turnaround time by combining robotics with digital imaging, dental shows to attract investors and dental companies, social media marketing for dental practices, and privatization through domestic and foreign investments will be the top emerging trends for this market during the forecast period.
People in China generally have a negative attitude toward the private healthcare system. Despite this factor, the government is focusing on the necessity of private investors to improve healthcare services, both general and dental.
Singapore is one of the largest foreign investors in China. The country has increased their economy through leadership in service-oriented businesses. The country has been seizing opportunities to expand the area of dental services in China. For instance, in November 2015, Singapore's Q & M Dental Group engaged into various acquisitions and partnerships and planned to establish 50 dental clinics and 20 dental laboratories in China.
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Technavio analysts highlight the following three market drivers that are contributing to the growth of the orthodontic services market in China:
- Direct and online sales for expansion
- Increasing incidence of orthodontic and periodontal diseases
- Rise in dental laboratories outsourcing orthodontic products
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Direct and online sales for expansion
Vendors in China adopt direct and online product sale strategies to remain competitive in the market. Direct sales help to outgrow the domestic revenue by increasing the overall market shares. Tier-1 companies that offer invisible orthodontic products are promoting direct product sales. The strategy does not involve distributors, which helps companies to offer products at lower prices. This leads to competitive product pricing and increases the implementation of orthodontic products. For instance, ALIGN TECHNOLOGY is promoting and targeting high direct sales in China.
“Many suppliers such as Yancheng Skyortho Supply in China are also offering invisible orthodontic products through online portals including Alibaba, eBay, and AliExpress. These online portals help to sell the products developed by local manufacturing companies such as Hangzhou DTC Medical Apparatus and American Orthodontics Shanghai. The online sales also help in cost reduction of the dental clinics and hospitals,” says Srinivas Sashidhar, a lead analyst at Technavio for in-vitro diagnostics research.
Increasing incidence of orthodontic and periodontal diseases
Periodontal diseases such as bleeding in gums are prevalent among the adult and pediatric population. Smoking, inadequate oral hygiene, diabetes, and low awareness about dental health are major causes of periodontal diseases in people. In the country, insurance companies do not provide reimbursement for dental examination and treatment plans, which restricts most people from opting for them. However, many people in urban areas visit dental clinics due to the awareness about dental diseases and related services, which increases the demand for improved dental services.
The rising geriatric population contributes to the increased demand for the use of dental implants, orthodontics (fixed and removable), and other dental services. Hence, the rise in the number of dental procedures is expected to have a positive impact on the growth of the market.
Rise in dental laboratories outsourcing orthodontic products
Rapid development and improvement in living standards has resulted in an increase in the disposable income of people in China, making high-quality oral treatment affordable for them. This led to the demand for various medical products, including invisible customized orthodontic devices.
The number of dental clinics in the country is on the rise, increasing the demand for associated products. For instance, in 2014, Guangdong province in South China had more than 40 dental laboratories that use cutting-edge technologies and offer cost-effective services.
“Companies in many developed countries such as the UK and the US outsource their orthodontic products to China to meet the associated rising demand. Along with cost-effective services, the cost of labor is also limited compared to the other countries. The government of China also conducts various dental exhibitions to attract foreign and domestic vendors to invest in orthodontics, which augurs well for the growth of the market,” says Srinivas.
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