The story of DenMat began in 1974, when Robert Ibsen, DDS, founded the company in Santa Maria, California.
A University of Southern California (USC) graduate born and raised in Los Angeles, Dr. Ibsen's passion for dentistry and innovative clinical and practice-management solutions were considered as groundbreaking. Ibsen hired chemist Richard Glace as his first employee. At the time, Ibsen had a successful private practice but longed for dental materials that were multi-functional and solved myriad dental needs for his patients. Glace worked with him to translate these ideas into tangible solutions. Soon, DenMat had 10 employees.
Just 15 years later, DenMat’s reputation for innovative solutions helped the company’s core product offerings become highly desired among oral health professionals.
This success led to multiple moves in order to accommodate increased demand and the hiring of hundreds of employees. While all this was more than Ibsen could have ever dreamed of, he was just getting started. In addition to testing and launching dental materials for restorative dentistry, DenMat began to offer products that catered to cosmetic dentistry. The first product in this segment was the Rembrandt® Shade Modification System, which allowed clinicians to easily treat discolored teeth. Never before had dentists had the ability to “paint” teeth to make every restoration a perfect match. This led to launch of Rembrandt® Whitening Toothpaste in 1990, which was shown to remove, and not just inhibit, the formation of plaque and tartar. The full line of Rembrandt® Oral Care Products was made available to consumers via major retailers and comprised toothpastes, mouthwashes and breath drops. DenMat was also the pioneer of modern whitening systems with Rembrandt® Lighten, the first dentist dispensed bleaching system to carry the ADA Seal of Acceptance. The Rembrandt® brand was purchased in 2004 by Gillette®.
Manufactured with DenMat's own proprietary Cerinate® porcelain, DenMat’s veneers were introduced in 1984. The first porcelain veneer to be marketed, this solution made possible long-term cosmetic enhancement of anterior teeth. The thin veneers were bonded to existing tooth structure without the need for removal of vital tooth structure, shots, or drilling. The company’s patented bonding materials complemented the veneers.
In 2004, DenMat rebranded Cerinate porcelain veneers as Lumineers®. A major advertising campaign directed at consumers helped build brand awareness and prompted many patients to ask their dentists about this immediate smile enhancement. Today, Lumineers remain the #1 patient-requested veneer
In 2007, Dr. Ibsen sold the company, and dedicated his time to work in private practice until his passing in 2016.
It is said that Ibsen changed the face of cosmetic dentistry – with both his innovative products and unique philosophies – and he continued to share his passion for dentistry through lecturing, authoring a book, and as a philanthropist providing free dental care to those who could not otherwise afford it.
To compliment the Lumineers offering, DenMat launched a unique removable esthetic appliance, Snap-On Smile®. This cosmetic enhancement was introduced via consumer marketing campaigns as a less expensive alternative to cosmetic smile enhancement. Also known as SOS, this affordable smile makeover solution continues to be a popular restoration among patients and dentists as both a short- and long-term restorative option.
In 2011, DenMat was sold to Centre Partners Management LLC and Mill Street Partners. With this acquisition came in a team of seasoned dental industry executives who saw great value in the company’s unique product portfolio. Immediate and ongoing acquisitions began, as a means to filling out DenMat’s core product lines. Most notable were the acquisitions of Discus Dental® (2012), PeriOptix® (2012), Zila® (2014), G. Hartzell & Sons® (2014), and Fluoridex® (2017).
The year 2014 also marked another acquisition of sorts: a new headquarters 30 miles south of Santa Maria, in Lompoc, California. This move was designed to accommodate the changing spatial needs of the company, including growth in both product offerings and employees.
Today, DenMat has 400 employees and manufactures a complete line of products, including restoratives, materials, consumables, small equipment and laboratory services.
With more than 86,000 dentist customers and its products available in 72 countries, DenMat has become synonymous with innovation, creativity and quality. In addition to a robust product offering, DenMat also facilitates ongoing learning and offers hundreds of continuing education courses worldwide. Though it’s been more than 40 years since Ibsen’s original idea sparked the genesis of a globally recognized company, DenMat remains dedicated to the principle on which it was founded: to streamline and simplify processes while enhancing care and improving oral health.