A DTT Exclusive interview with Core3D General Manager Greg Harris.
Hi Greg, thank you so much for agreeing to interview with us. We’re very excited to give our readers a sneak peek behind the scenes at Core3D!
To start, let’s have you tell me a little about yourself and your role at Core3DCentres.
I am the General Manager of Core3D in North America, Our facilities include one in Calgary, Las Vegas and most recently, Troy Michigan. I started my career with Nobelpharma (now NobelBiocare) in 1988 and worked as an implant rep and sales manager. At Nobel, I was part of the team that started Procera in 1997. We launched Procera in Canada and I moved to the US in 1999.
An opportunity presented itself and I joined DSG as Director of Sales in 2000. In 2002 I started a consulting career. Some of the names I have consulted or worked with include Captek, 3M Lava, Dentsply Cercon. I was contracted with Cadent in 2005 (now called iTero)
I Joined the Novadent team in 2006. Novodent is a small group of large labs (Isaquah, Harmony, DFF, and Great White). My position with Novdent was Director of Sales and Marketing and I was located at Issaquah.
Left Novadent in 2011 and went back to consulting (working with Zimmer Biomet on their initial Encode/iTero workflow).
We were also working with labs and Oral surgeons to bring intra-oral scanning to market.
In October of 2015, I joined Core3D as a full time consultant and have been located in Las Vegas up to now.
I’ve been fortunate enough that I’ve had the privilege of being involved in all 3 great dental technology revolutions: Implants, Intra-oral Scanning and CAD/CAM Milling.
What excites you the most about the most recent acquisition of Core3D’s Troy Michigan Facility?
Where do I start? The opportunity to earn the business and trust of customers who would otherwise not consider Core3D as an option is very exciting.
We hope to achieve this through a combination of offering 3shape support like no other reseller in our industry, continuing education that is focused on meeting our customer’s specific needs as well as implementing Quality Systems that adhere to FDA regulations but also deliver outstanding products to our customers.
How did this acquisition deal come about? It’s not like there was a giant ‘for sale’ sign hanging out front. Were there any other suitors?
I give credit to the team at Ivoclar. They had a particular purchaser in mind. Their number one concern was keeping the Troy team intact! With that in mind they also wanted their customers to continue to receive the best 3shape support and service the industry could offer. Maintaining the status quo was one of the toughest criteria with many of the major competing bidders looking to either consolidate personnel or pulling back with their level of support. The last piece of the puzzle was milling and material competence. Ivoclar was very concerned that the potential new owners be comfortable with the range of products that they were offering to their customers for the sake of continuity.
Core3D happened to be such a candidate! We have always been a committed partner to Ivoclar worldwide. This, combined with our strong vision and leadership made the decision an easy one!
The conversation began as a “what if?” with both sides ensuring that all the boxes were checked and that this could be a win-win scenario for everyone involved. Very quickly, it became apparent that the core values and visions were aligned between both organizations and the hard work began. This was not simply a transaction, it was a process of creating value!
With consolidation in our industry happening all of the time, there is much speculation that ‘Big Players’ such as Core3D, are simply out to acquire businesses for the sake of dismantling them. Staff and teams are broken up and re-assigned, equipment harvested and the focus simply on the bottom line. Is this the case with the latest acquisition?
The bottom line in our industry is a very finite and elusive thing! Today’s outsource pricing does not allow for any consolidation play. There is simply no advantage to rolling up unprofitable businesses to make even larger ones. We had to find a way to provide services that add value to the average small to mid-sized lab, while also becoming a support and production mechanism for larger labs to rely on.
Some of the challenges that even the biggest labs face are: the cost of capital equipment, the team to support them, and the ability to scale. Not to mention having the redundancy and a nimbleness to change direction rapidly with new technology and advances in materials.
A great example of this is Carbon. Carbon met with our team and came up with a cost effective compelling strategy that allowed us to quickly take advantage of their process and materials.
Core3D has invested in Carbon technology and prints 100’s of models per day using their CLIP technology! Look for Carbon to bring even more innovation to Chicago Midwinter meeting.
The Carbon Material roadmap has new offerings in surgical guides and stents as well as partials and dentures.
With new management, there is always some expected pushback. How do you, in your role as GM, plan on implementing systems from your other operations, while also maintaining the culture and existing workflow of the Troy facility?
We have a great team in Vegas. They have educated me about the many challenges of running a milling center in today’s competitive outsourcing market. The crew in Vegas always exceeds expectations! That can be said about Troy as well. They have a well-trained, motivated team with great management. I have already learned a ton from the team here in Troy and I am just scratching the surface. My job, is to not screw any of that up and take the best from each team and continue to enable and empower each crew with the right tools and processes to better support our customers.
Some examples of this are implementing the same complete top to bottom quality systems from our Vegas facility that was developed with the help of Tim Torbenson and Chris Brown at Evo820. Having a SOP in place is essential moving forward, but it is an absolutely disruptive process to implement in an already busy operation without the guidance of someone like Evo820. Tim and Chris are now evaluating our Troy facility DOMAS certification. We will then implement additional systems to allow
The Troy facility to add other materials to their production offering. This helps expand capabilities and capacities that better serve of growing customer base.
Another part of C3d business is contract milling for implant companies that have chosen to offer a digital workflow to their customers without the need to invest in the process. Core3D presently mills for companies like Thommen and Keystone, We also offer over 100 platforms of the most popular brands. This ability combined with C3D scan bodies and matching analogues make us an easy destination for those iTero and Trios cases.
What should incoming 3shape and milling customers expect to be different from core3d as opposed to their previous experiences? How does Core3d stand out and differentiate itself from other 3shape resellers in terms of licensing and support?
Education, education, education. What we’ve learned so far is that all labs are not the same! Therefore, their 3shape support, especially in the area of training, should also differ and reflect those needs. The 3 most impactful discoveries that we’ve found are: Basic Training, Competency, and Accessible Education.
For example, Basic Training would be applicable to those labs that have been scanning for a long time but recently lost their key employee, and they now have to quickly get someone trained in the shortest time possible. This happens quite often and we’re excited to offer something that will provide such a valuable tool to our customers when they are in a bind.
The next one, Competency: there is a big difference between knowing the basics of working step by step in order to design something, and knowing How it should be designed. We have started to develop programs with industry experts like Peter Pizzi and Jason Attwood who will teach the theory and concepts. Building on that, we at Core3D would then teach the processes behind how to achieve and materialize those theories and concepts in a separate session.
In order to offer Accessible Education, we would like to become the epicenter of CAD CAM learning. Core3D will be offering education in both locations: Troy, MI and Las Vegas, NV. That means you can get what you need no matter where you are located or what your area of expertise is. We will also be offering 1-hour webinar series’ so that those labs that can’t afford the time to travel have an opportunity to learn during their lunch.
We should also mention that we have invested heavily in Dongle support and 3shape loaners.
We recently purchased 25 scanners to put into our loaner library to support those customers who can’t afford any downtime should there be an unexpected disturbance with their existing digital workflow.
Core3D has really positioned itself as a leader in the milling center category. How did Core3D achieve this reputation?
I give all the credit of that reputation to Mark and Grant Maier. They have never lost the drive to be the best and the most innovative. They always said they would never be the cheapest, and that there would always be a place for those offering the best quality.
Stay tuned for more as we continue our interview and focus on more of Core3D’s educational offerings in Chicago this year and beyond, strategic product partnerships, collaborations, and cool new products that they are adding to their lineup!