A Pioneering and Portable Dental DSO, Enable Dental, Raises Capital to Expand

Enable Dental just announced the closing of its Series A financing in December, led by FCA Venture Partners, to scale its proprietary portable dental solution model. The uniquely developed solution leverages technological advancements in equipment and systems to serve in-need populations including geriatric, special needs, and people who are not well served by a traditional brick and mortar dental office. The investment will be used to expand the platform into other high-demand geographies, develop technology systems, and build out its team of dedicated clinical partners.

The dental industry has been largely focused on consolidation and improving brick and mortar practices. Enable Dental is re-imagining how dental care is delivered to individuals and organizations with unique needs.  The people they serve have the lowest rates of private dental insurance and access to care, as well as the highest rates of oral disease. Enable’s on-premise services have been delivered at independent and assisted living facilities, skilled nursing homes, substance and behavioral abuse centers, group homes, healthcare institutions, hospitals, and personal residences.

Paul Langley, CEO of Enable Dental“We believe the future of dentistry will be driven by alternative delivery models to lower the cost of delivery and provide access to more people. We are excited to accelerate our growth to bring convenient, quality care to more people in more places.” -Paul Langley, CEO of Enable Dental

Enable Dental provides the convenience of bringing clinicians on-demand to the patient.  Many patients benefit tremendously from being seen in their own environment. Many patients depend on a family member, caretaker, or facility to coordinate routine dental care. This coordination can be difficult and costly for patients and their caregivers. A patient may only have the option to arrange expensive transportation or be unnecessarily sedated for routine visits. Regardless of the reason, the commonality is that dental care is not available to the patient and the new dental group seeks to bridge the gap. Enable Dental has developed a uniquely scalable model to address these needs. Their clinical teams travel to the patient’s service location and bring all necessary supplies and equipment, a portable operatory unit, and a reclining dental chair. They utilize a flexible, pop-up style clinic that can be customized to the patient’s situation.

Dr. Andrew Nguyen, DDS, Clinical Director of Enable Dental“As a clinician, I have seen firsthand the lack of access to care in our special needs and aging population. I strongly believe that Enable Dental’s portable model can provide quality dental care to those that have been underserved by the traditional dental model. We improve the patient’s quality of life by bringing care directly to those that need it the most and those left with few to no alternatives.” -Dr. Andrew Nguyen, DDS, Clinical Director of Enable Dental

Their people, processes, and systems create a unique service offering that provides benefits to a number of stakeholders involved in the patient’s care. Many times this involves additional coordination with primary care physicians, nurses, family members (responsible parties), organization management, and potentially others. It’s tough to provide the level of care and coordination needed for these individuals without a well constructed team and systems. Care models should always start with the patient and Enable’s model has unique workflows and even different services offered to specific populations, including, a weekly tooth brushing program for geriatric patients who struggle with daily oral hygiene tasks and offering a fixed capitated day rate to deliver unlimited services to substance abuse center residents on a recurring basis.

Established in 2017 with the vision of becoming a platform to support clinicians serving in-need populations in alternative settings, the dental group currently supports portable on-premise dental operations in Texas, Kansas, Missouri, Colorado, and California and is a pioneering dental support organization (DSO).  With access to care being a massive problem, the founders did not think there had been enough investment or creativity in the way dental care can/should be delivered. Therefore, the company was started to make a difference and impact lives.

They are seeking to expand into more states as they find strong clinical partners and unmet demand for our services. Enable’s approach will be primarily greenfield. The dental group has the flexibility to pursue acquisitions of existing mobile/portable operations, but this will be opportunistic given the low numbers of providers.

Ben Tiggelaar, President of Enable Dental“At Enable Dental, we’re focused on reducing barriers to dental care by putting the patient’s needs first, integrating and coordinating between the medical and dental worlds to improve care, and utilizing technology and teledentistry where possible.”-Ben Tiggelaar, President of Enable Dental

The portable DSO is piloting a teledentistry (store-and-forward) program for patients with special needs that they think could be transformative. The dentist remains at the center of care, but tools like teledentistry can make providers more efficient with their time and therefore lower the cost of delivery to where they can even serve patients using their model on Medicaid rates. Some states they operate in are more forward-thinking in terms of adopting and allowing technology that can enable greater access to care for many of the populations the group serves. Enable plans to make some big investments in technology over the next year.

Enable’s support center is located in Austin, Texas. They have centralized many functions including patient coordination, scheduling, billing, marketing, and administration that can now provide benefit across a number of individual clinical teams. As they grow, they’ll be able to offer centralized functions unavailable to smaller operations.

“Millions of people find it difficult or impossible to get needed dental care from brick and mortar practices. Enable Dental’s unique model provides patients, families, and caregivers with high quality care in the convenience of their home,” said Matthew A. King, Managing Partner of FCA Venture Partners, which led the investment round. “We are very pleased to partner with an innovative leader using technology to bring dental services to more people.”

Enable Dental’s mission is to expand access to dental care for in-need populations. They provide support for dentists and other clinicians who work in alternative settings and have continued to build deep relationships with their partners, enabling them to connect with under-served populations at scale. They believe consistent access to dental care is essential for those who are unable or unwilling to visit a traditional brick-and-mortar dental office to improve quality of life. Technology and communication systems are at the core of what they do, creating a personalized experience for patients, improving outcomes, and lowering the cost of delivery. Visit http://www.enabledental.com for more information.

Enable Dental Group’s leadership team includes:
  • Paul Langley – CEO
  • Ben Tiggelaar – President
  • Joyce Go – Vice President
  • Vicki Delaughter – Director of Operations
  • Dr. Gary Solomon – Clinical Director
  • Dr. Wah-Yung Tsang – Clinical Director
  • Dr. Andrew Nguyen – Clincal Director
  • Matt King – Board Member, FCA Venture Partners

Founded in 1996, FCA Venture Partners has a long history of investing in successful healthcare entrepreneurs. The firm is passionate about building sustainable businesses and providing strategic value to their portfolio companies. FCA invests $3-6M in fast growing healthcare technology and services companies making processes in the industry faster, better, and cheaper while improving the quality of care and the patient experience. Located in Nashville and deeply involved in the growth of the U.S. healthcare community, FCA Venture Partners is poised to take advantage of disruptive opportunities that help move healthcare forward.

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