ZURICH, Feb 16 (Reuters) - Straumann Chief Executive Marco Gadola is on the hunt for a 3D printing partner, saying on Thursday it is likely that the Swiss dental implant maker will reach distribution agreement over the next 12 months that includes a possible ownership stake.
"What we have to offer is a worldwide distribution network, especially when it comes to penetrating dentists' offices," Gadola said in an interview . "More and more dentists are looking at 3D printing in their own offices."
Gadola said fast-growing 3D printing applications for dentists is one of the few remaining gaps in the company's push to become what he calls a "total solutions" provider.
"The probability is rather high" that such a distribution pact will emerge over the next year, he said.
Straumann's full-year 2016 net income tripled to 230 million Swiss francs ($229 million), helped by a one-time tax gain related to the acquisition of Brazil's Neodent. It plans to pay a dividend of 4.25 francs per share.
$1 = 1.0043 Swiss francs Reporting by John Miller; Editing by Michael Shields