Palamon partners with IDH management in take out of Carlyle

Palamon Capital Partners (Palamon) has partnered with the management team of IDH Group (IDH) to enter into a binding share purchase agreement to acquire The Carlyle Group’s (Carlyle) shareholding and the shares held by the other minority shareholders in the Company to become the sole equity sponsor. 

The transaction is expected to complete in the third quarter of 2021 following receipt of the necessary regulatory approvals and will be accompanied by a full refinancing of the Company’s third-party borrowings.

Palamon has been a long-term investor in IDH, having originally acquired the business in 2011 in partnership with Carlyle. The transaction reflects Palamon’s strong commitment to IDH and its confidence in the Company’s position as the largest NHS provider of dental services in the country. This follow-on investment will be financed through a new partnership funded by Palamon investors with debt provided by one of the Firm’s largest financing partners, putting in place a solid and stable new capital structure which will support the growth trajectory of the business.

IDH Group offers dental treatments to more than five million patients every year through its network of almost 600 dental practices operating under the {my}dentist brand. IDH also owns Dental Directory (now branded DD), one of the UK’s largest suppliers of dental and beauty products, which services more than 12,000 dental practices and 6,000 beauty clinics.

Over the past four years, IDH has been transformed under the leadership of its new management team, who have focused on creating the leading dental consumer brand in the UK, which today has some of the highest patient satisfaction scores in the sector. The service offering is augmented with a new and unique affordable private treatment range, marketed as ‘{my}options’, which has been a significant driver of growth for the Company, as well as improving access to care for patients and helping clinicians to build long-term, diverse careers within the business.

The existing executive management team will remain in place to guide IDH through the next stage of its journey, led by Tom Riall, CEO, and Nilesh Pandya, CFO, who will both continue in their existing roles and as members of the new Board.

Tom Riall, CEO of IDH, who has led the transformation of the business over the last four years, says: “This is a great outcome for my dentist, our clinicians, our practice teams, and our patients. Building on our long-term partnership with the NHS, this transaction will give us the fresh investment that we need to pursue our exciting plans for the future, and to focus more than ever on helping patients access the affordable care they need and supporting our clinicians to build the careers they want. I am hugely grateful to Palamon for its belief in us and for its support.”

Fabio Massimo Giuseppetti, Partner at Palamon, says: “We are delighted to be renewing our partnership with the exceptional management team at IDH, whose work to position {my}dentist as the premier dental brand in the UK for both clinicians and patients has underpinned the strength and stability of the company throughout the pandemic. Backed by a new capital structure, and with a proven strategy for growth, we are truly excited about the prospects for the future.”