With over 11 years in the dental M&A field I have seen many changes in the market, some good some bad, but what is consistent is that many dentists have only one perception of corporates, a negative one. There is a growing acceptance that corporate dentistry can offer so much, and it can be a powerful force for good, but so far nearly all corporate groups have failed to deliver on that promise. I believe that is changing, and there is now a Corporate that dentists can believe in.
The time, I believe, has arrived for a group to shine as a beacon of corporate dentistry. A group that brings the many benefits a professional, dedicated support function can deliver, without forgetting about the dentistry!
There are many things that corporates do well; governance, HR, accounting, facility management, however the bigger they get often the more impersonal they become. Traditional corporates are driven by investors and accountants who only believe in cost cutting. They don’t appreciate that dentistry in all its guises is a ‘People’s Business’. You have to look after your staff and your clinicians, and then allow the dentist to build on their relationship of trust with the patient. I believe Portman Dental understand this, and this has made it the group dentists can believe in.
Portman’s ethos is to put the patient first and empower the dentist with flexibility to treat the patients how they would like to be treated themselves. This mean complete clinical freedom. No restrictions on materials and laboratories, no ‘list’ to choose from, no obligation to use a laboratory that they have no relationship with or materials they have no experience of. At its heart there is a simple philosophy, let the dentist do what they do best, treat patients, and make it as easy as possible for them to do this.
Corporates should listen to their clinicians, which is something Portman prides itself on. All principals who join Portman are invited to attend ‘Clinical Board’ meetings. These meetings give the clinician a voice and an opportunity to share fresh ideas as well as any concerns they may have. Our inclusive structure ensures we make informed decisions for the good our patients.
We are proud that every Principal who has joined Portman has either stayed with Portman beyond their initial commitment or retired. This is testament to our ethos of offering clinical freedom and upholding the values of a patient focused environment.
Portman Dental is a corporate you really can believe in. We invite you to reference what we say with your colleagues. You see adverts and receive many flyers and letters from groups and agents to sell your practice, but do you really know what it is like to work in a Corporate? Portman actively encourages its potential suitors to speak to our dentists, we call it ‘Referencability’; do the research on us and you will find a group doing it differently.
Gary Chapman, Head of Mergers and Acquistions