Six Emerging Dental Groups to Watch Now

As the pendulum continues to swing towards the group dentistry model, here is Group Dentistry Now’s  list of six DSOs to watch in 2017 (in alphabetical order)*:

Founded March 1, 2017, CORDENTAL Group is a start-up with six locations under consideration in the Mid-Atlantic. The group was founded by Dana Soper and Steven Jones who have partnered with New MainStream Capital. Both have previous experience with DeNovo and acquisition healthcare business development.   Thus far, the executive team has an excellent track record in building successful healthcare companies through a carefully planned and executed affiliation and integration strategy. Their focus is on a dentist-centric philosophy; providing flexible affiliation structures, and supporting the back office and corporate administrative functions.

The legal DSO structure will be formed upon closing of the initial affiliations.  The primary growth strategy will be via affiliations. CORDENTAL has an aggressive growth plan of affiliating with 50-75 practices over the next three to five years. CORDENTAL’s key initiatives are ensuring their practices receive excellent support necessary to grow and thrive while providing best-in-class patient care.  A key concern and challenge for CORDENTAL is recruitment of key employees and dentists into the practices which will be critical to cultivating the culture and quality care that they are striving for.

Key executives in group:
Dana Soper, Co-Founder & CEO
Steven Jones, Co-Founder & Chief Development Officer
Jack W. Haney, DDS, Clinical Advisor

Founded in 2012 by Scott Asnis, DDS, Dental 365 currently has ten locations in Long Island and New York City. They currently have a legal DSO structure in place with which there is a management services agreement (MSA) between Premier Care Dental Management [Management Group] and Asnis Dental [Dental Practices]. Interested in both DeNovo and affiliations, by the end of 2017, Dental365 intends  expanding its dental group to 15-17 offices.  After that, their goal is to expand by eight to ten practices each year.

Their key concerns have been scaling up in a large metropolitan area, as well as trying to keep a “private practice” feel in a large group practice. Their key successes are being the gold standard group practice in the NYC metro area, becoming the largest employer of dentists in the NYC metro area, and being open 365 days a year. Dental365’s offices focus on all areas of dentistry, so patients never have to go elsewhere for dental treatment. Dental365 accepts walk-ins with little or no waiting time for adults and children and offers everything from emergency extractions to routine exams, including cosmetic restorations and veneers, periodontal procedures and Invisalign all in a state-of-the-art environment where patient comfort is a top priority.

Key executives in group:
Scott Asnis, DDS – CEO and Director of Dentistry
Jessica Colon – Director of Operations
Lauren Gandillon – Chief Marketing Officer
Kevin Duffy – Chief Operating Officer
David Kim, MD – Co-Founding Partner
Cathy Jones – Chief Human Resources Officer
Hiro Soriano – Chief Insurance Officer
Michael Sabatino – Chief Financial Officer

Founded by Dr. Melvin Feiler in 1984, Dimensional Dental currently has 39 locations in Michigan, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. They currently have a legal DSO structure in place and are interested in both DeNovo and affiliations growth opportunities.

Their key concerns are doctor recruitment and finding quality affiliation (M&A) targets.  Dimensional Management believes the perception of  ‘corporate dentistry’ is a major issue as many doctors still feel as though they will be told how to practice dentistry, rather than understanding that the management team is there to support their non-clinical, day-to-day business functions.

Dimensional Dental’s recent key successes include the hiring of a strong leadership team including VP of corporate development, director of marketing, VP of facilities and VP of revenue cycle.  Another major, recent success was the execution of their largest affiliation to date in early 2017 which encompassed eight dental practices in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.  Their dedicated transition team assured the integration process was seamless and put the new practices in a position to continue to grow with a defined strategy in place.

Dimensional Dental also believes the speed of and time required for the acquisition process can be particularly challenging for both dental support organization and practice owner.   DSOs can positively differentiate themselves by having dedicated and experienced transaction professionals, a structured and streamlined diligence and integration process, and readily available capital to provide sellers with an efficient and smooth alternative to transition their practice.

Key executives in group:
Vito Dacchille – CEO
Mike Polgardy – CFO

Founded in 1995 by Mark Bruzek, First Impressions, SC currently has nine offices in the state of Wisconsin.  These offices are conveniently located in Wausau, Weston, Plover, Rhinelander, Shawano, Medford, Appleton, Suamico, and Bellevue (opening 5/17). Operating under the name First Impressions Pediatric Dentistry & Orthodontics, they are a privately owned and operated children’s dental and oral care group.  First Impressions is Wisconsin’s largest provider of pediatric dentistry services to Medicaid recipients, focusing on serving low-to-moderate income patients. and patients with special physical needs.  They provide dental care to all children in surrounding communities without governmental intervention, grants, support, or excessive expenditures or earmarks, while maintaining fiscal responsibility to the governmental entitlement programs.  They currently do not have a legal DSO structure in place and are focused exclusively  on DeNovo locations.

First Impressions’ key successes includes not only practice growth , but employee growth from 5 original employees to over 90 current team members.  Another success is the formation of a community dental care foundation that is a designated 501 c 3 organization.  The foundation is dedicated to the education, advocacy, and preventive needs of school aged children. This program also includes a community mobile dental clinic called the “Toothmobile” that serves 15 counties in Wisconsin and provides services in schools as well as community programming  with WIC, Headstart, day care centers, and at health fairs. First Impressions SC also offers their ‘Best Care Program’ which is a risk assessment program that is provided to all families to better educate and instill a manner of self-awareness and preventive care. They have learned that their commitment to patients has grown their business through word-of-mouth rather than a committed referral based system.

Their key concerns include Medicaid and the need to be flexible on a financial level for those who are dealing with financial hardships. Medicaid has seen a reduction in reimbursement, but First Impressions has overcome much of this by increasing their efficiency models.

Key executives in group:
Dr. Thomas Turner
Dr. Corey Brimacombe
Dr. Carl Hash
Dr. Ned Markey
Dr. Josh Spiegl

Founded in 1992 by Robert F. Morrison D.M.D., Morrison Dental Group (MDG) had its first expansion in 2001. MDG has eight practices all located in Virginia.   MDG has 2 practice locations in Williamsburg, one in Hampton, one in Newport News, three practices in Richmond, and one in Chincoteague.

With a dental support organization structure in place, MDG built a management platform before instituting growth. Their growth strategy plans are for DeNovo as well as acquisition with doctor not staying and acquisition with doctor staying to test “proof of concept” of systems, metrics and management platform. MGD’s short term plan is for rapid growth with acquisitions and/or records purchases within current geographic areas to facilitate horizontal and vertical integration of management services and access to technology and internal referrals. Their long term growth is focused on a goal of 3-5 practices per year with a strategic goal of EBITDA of 5+ million before alignment with private equity.

Morrison Dental Group’s key concerns are recruitment of quality practitioners, decreasing insurance reimbursements, and regulatory management and health insurance costs.

MGD’s key successes include the management of their hygiene care program, promotion of talent from within the organization, and the branding of Morrison Dental Group to include a technology advantage with an excellent reputation for high level dental care.

MDG also points out that investing in a management platform before initial expansion and growth helps to create a smoother transition of acquired practices for both MDG and the acquired practice and staff. MDG utilizes a transition team well in advance of the expected closing date for a new practice acquisition. They also strive to recognize “home grown” talent within the organization, which MDG believes fosters a loyal team while building the brand in the community and within the acquired practices.

In 2017 Morrison Dental Group has acquired three practices and effected one records purchase of a retiring doctor. They have the potential of three more acquisitions within the next six months, which are in an initial due diligence phase of evaluation.

Key Execs in Group:
COO: Alison Morrison M.S., M.B.A
CMO: Rebekah Morrison
Dir. Logistics: Alexander Morrison
Dir. IT and Operations: Cindy Byrd

Started in 2011 by Dmitry Burshteyn, Perfect Dental Management (PDM) currently has 16 practices in Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Texas under the brands Perfect Dental and Kids Zone Dental.

PDM currently has a legal DSO structure in place.  Historically, their growth strategy has been centered around DeNovo locations.  While DeNovo location growth will still be a major focus, Perfect Dental Management will now look at a plan of action that includes affiliations.

A key struggle for PDM was that their growth occurred so quickly that they were not able to put consistent operations policies and procedures in place to keep up with this rapid growth. Currently PDM is diligently working towards making sure that every practice operates in a consistent manner.

Their key successes have revolved around commitment to dental care and dedication to recruiting, hiring and retaining devoted doctors.  They believe that there are tremendous opportunities to continue to provide high quality care to patients in the markets they currently serve by expanding the services offered, as well as increasing the number of locations and providers.

Perfect Dental Management’s long term strategy is to take their model into new geographic areas across the country. They are forecasting to double the number of locations over the next 2-3 years.

Key executives in group:
Dmitry Bushtey, Founder/CEO
Ian Brock, COO/President


* Emerging groups on this list were chosen from a pool of entrants who submitted information to GDN. GDN based selections by evaluating all applicants’ answers to our questionnaire. GDN received no monetary compensation for including any DSOs on this list.