SmileDirectClub granted patent for SmileShop retail concept
SmileDirectClub (SDC) announced it has been issued a patent for its SmileShop intellectual property from the United States Patent & Trademark Office.
The patent, U.S. Patent No. 10,636,522, further strengthens the telehealth dentistry pioneer’s efforts to bring affordable, accessible oral care to more people through its unique and innovative teledentistry platform and direct-to-consumer business model.
The patent ensures no clear aligner competitor will be able to duplicate SmileDirectClub’s unique model for 18 years.
The patent encompasses the unique SmileShop concept and process, including scheduling of an appointment at a SmileShop, sending the scheduling confirmation to the customer, conducting the intraoral scan, generating a treatment plan, receiving approval of the treatment plan by a licensed dentist or orthodontist, producing aligners in accordance with the treatment plan, and sending those aligners to the customer.
SmileDirectClub’s clear aligner therapy platform has helped more than 1,000,000 customers achieve a straighter and brighter smile.
Furthermore, the company announced it is making plans to slowly reopen its SmileShops beginning in May in the U.S., Canada, Germany, Australia, New Zealand, the UK and Ireland as local governments begin to lift business restrictions.
After its shops temporarily closed in March, SmileDirectClub, one of North America’s largest 3D printing manufacturers, dedicated some of its capacity to producing 3D printed personal protective equipment to help in the fight against COVID-19.
The company has shipped more than 40,000 face shields to medical organizations, elder care facilities, dentists and orthodontists during this time, and will supply all of its SmileShop team members with face shields and other PPE along with staggered appointment times, temperature scans and other social distancing measures to ensure a safe, sanitary experience upon reopening.
SDC closed at $5.39, it last traded at $7.20.
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