SmileDirectClub, the pioneer of at-home, doctor-directed aligner therapy, today announced the completion of its first institutional private placement of equity capital for a total of $380 million. In addition, the Company received a valuation of $3.2 billion. Clayton, Dubilier & Rice (CD&R), one of the world’s leading private equity investors, led the financing, which included meaningful participation from Kleiner Perkins and Spark Capital. As part of the transaction, Rick Schnall, a CD&R Partner, will join SmileDirectClub’s Board of Directors. J.P. Morgan served as sole placement agent to SmileDirectClub in connection with the transaction. The funds will be used for innovation, research and development, and international expansion.
Based in Nashville, Tennessee, SmileDirectClub is leading the charge in teledentistry and continues to disrupt the overall teeth straightening industry. Known for its work of straightening smiles across the country at an affordable price – up to 60% less than traditional methods – SmileDirectClub has seen incredible growth since its inception in 2014. The Company has straightened more than 300,000 smiles, has hired more than 3,200 employees, and is currently profitable.
Since 2016, SmileDirectClub has opened more than 150 retail SmileShop locations across the U.S. Utilizing a unique teledentistry platform and omni-channel distribution model, the Company executes its mission of providing access to care by providing those who need it with a straighter and more confident smile. In addition, SmileDirectClub has expanded and launched new retail partnerships with several national retailers.
“We are very excited with the outcome of our most recent fundraising round. Our mission has always been to provide an affordable and convenient option to anyone who wants to transform their smile. We are excited to continue our growth into new spaces and be given the incredible opportunity to reach even more people with our life-changing service,” said SmileDirectClub Co-founder Alex Fenkell. “We can’t wait to see what the future holds and are grateful for the support from our new investors.”
“Our investment in SmileDirectClub fits squarely with our focus on backing and helping to build fast-growing, disruptive healthcare businesses that lower the cost of delivery while optimizing patient outcomes,” said Schnall. “The company is led by a strong, entrepreneurial leadership team, and we believe the business is positioned to be the industry leader with a very compelling customer value proposition, which will create significant and sustainable value going forward.”
“Even among its peer group of unicorns, SmileDirectClub’s growth stands out. Consumers simply love the freedom of getting aligners delivered straight to their home,” said Noah Knauf, General Partner of Kleiner Perkins. “We're thrilled to partner with the SmileDirectClub team as they offer millions more people an affordable and convenient way to improve their smile.”
Prior to this equity private placement, SmileDirectClub was largely self-funded through Camelot Venture Group, a leader in the disruptive consumer brand industry.
SmileDirectClub was founded on a simple belief: Everyone deserves a smile they love. Recognizing an opportunity to increase access to dental care, the company pioneered the creation of cutting-edge platforms and technology for doctor-directed, at-home aligner therapy. With a digital network of more than 200 affiliated licensed dentists and orthodontists overseeing customer treatment plans, from impressions made with an at-home kit or from a digital scan at one of the 150 SmileShops across the United States, SmileDirectClub has made orthodontic solutions more affordable and convenient than ever before. SmileDirectClub was founded in 2014 by Alex Fenkell and Jordan Katzman in partnership with Camelot Venture Group, whose portfolio companies include 1-800 CONTACTS and Quicken Loans, and is based in Nashville, Tennessee. For more information visit SmileDirectClub.com.
About Clayton, Dubilier & Rice
Founded in 1978, Clayton, Dubilier & Rice is a private investment firm. Since inception, CD&R has managed the investment of more than $27 billion in 82 companies representing a broad range of industries with an aggregate transaction value of more than $125 billion. The Firm's healthcare-related investments include CareStream Dental, VWR International, AssuraMed, Envision Healthcare, PharMEDium, Healogics, Vets First Choice, agilon health, and Drive DeVilbiss Healthcare. The Firm has offices in New York and London. For more information, visit www.cdr-inc.com.