several dogs in front of a pink wall
Black and White headshot of IndeVets CEO Michael Raphael
Words by:
Michael Raphael — CEO of IndeVets

Welcome back to everyone who traveled to Orlando last week for some of the chilliest weather in Florida in years. It was so cold, iguanas were dropping from trees and some industrious Floridians were collecting the lizards in their cars — at their own risk.

As it has for several years, the investment bank William Blair attended VMX and surveyed veterinarians on their expectations for growth in 2020. This year more than 300 veterinarians answered the survey.

The results (3.7 percent growth) were solid, only slightly off from the 2019 projection of 3.9 percent. This downward shift continues a declining trend from 2016, but still shows robust growth in the industry. The US economy as a whole grew at just 2.1 percent in the fourth quarter of 2019.

yearly industry growth
Source: Brakke Consulting and William Blair.

The other interesting data point to come from the survey was expectations for practice traffic to increase at 3.5 percent — slightly slower than revenue growth. The fact that it’s lower suggests that pricing increases will continue to grow at a faster pace than visits. So far, clients have show great elasticity in responding to price increases

Additional findings

The report also found:

  • 86% of respondents expect the level of lab tests (both in-clinic and point-of-care testing) to expand over the coming years.
  • Idexx is the dominant diagnostic testing company with 57 percent of respondents. This is up from 36 percent in 2013. Idexx also had the highest customer satisfaction.
  • Antech, on the other hand, has fallen to 32 percent of the market — down from 51 percent in 2016.
  • 61 percent of veterinarians said their hospital is now offering home delivery.
  • AVIMark and Cornerstone make up more than 50 percent of the practice management software market — each at 27 percent.
  • 67 percent of veterinarians are likely or very likely to offer pet insurance to clients.

Read the full report here.

More from IndeVets:

Four key trends for animal hospitals in 2021

Is it safe to use relief vets during Covid?

3 reasons animal hospitals will be busier than ever this fall