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a blog by Chris Barrow

To buy or not to buy?


It can often be a tough decision, especially your first purchase of another practice, sometimes after years of commercial solitude.

The SWOT analysis above is a quick and easy way to evaluate the issues to be considered.

Far too often, it seems the ONLY conversation is about price. Hardly surprising as goodwill values have risen from sublime to ridiculous.

There is so much more to the conversation than just what you pay and when (even though I understand the relevance).

It really is important to consider the “Weaknesses” and “Threats” on this analysis as, in the long run, they can be far more important than haggling over a few thousands of pounds.

I’ve met dentists who have failed to conduct their due diligence properly (and professional advisors who have supervised that neglect in anticipation of early fees).

People like me get the call to sort out the mess post-acquisition and it can be tough work and ultimately more expensive in time, money and people than the victorious deal on day one.

The single biggest threat is changing the habits of the people (the team members) whom you buy.

The second biggest threat is supervised clinical neglect.

If your due diligence is poor it can take 2 painful years or more to solve these first two problems before you start to then build the satellite.

I’m starting to notice some dental entrepreneurs who are considering growth through cold satellite squats to be a slower route but with less stress.

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