A Pitlochry dental firm which started life in a former fruit and vegetable store is eyeing a third expansion into northern Perthshire.
Infinityblu Dental Care, established by a Scottish Young Dentist of the Year winner, Chris Barrowman (38), opened a second practice in Dunkeld earlier this Spring.
Now, with the firm celebrating 10 years in business this week, opportunities for further growth off the A9 corridor are being actively identified, with £1m invested by the company to date.
A total of 28 dental and office staff are now employed over two sites by the firm, whose vision of brand creation with a community emphasis has proved popular in rural Perthshire.
News of further potential growth to the north of Perth city is in line with the steady development of Infinityblu, from a start-up to the shortlists of the national industry awards.
The company was the brainchild of Glasgow-born father of three, Chris Barrowman, who struck out on his own in 2007 after ‘cutting his teeth’ as an employee at practices in the region.
Identifying a geographic gap, he purchased a former fruit sellers’ in Pitlochry’ Atholl Road for £220 000, investing £240 000 to renovate it into a modern building which landed a Most Attractive Practice award in 2012.
From operating initially with ‘2 staff and an answering machine’, the company is now looking at further sites after investing £300 000 in the establishment of its second practice this year in Dunkeld, pushing turnover up by over 25 percent in the first few months.
“The patient lists at both practices are healthy and with the second site now 6 months down the road, we are looking ahead,” said Barrowman, who is optimistic about the future for progressive dental firms outside Scotland’s highly competitive larger cities.
“A lot will change within dentistry in the next ten years and we have our eyes on a couple of potential geographic areas that might work. Location is important, and always has been, for us.
“When we started out, ten years ago, we wanted to create a brand rather than just a dental practice.
“Although we would now be considered a big firm, staff-wise, we are not a corporate firm where patients don’t know the dentists and the staff are all working to targets.
“The success, which we hope to build upon, has always been down to the belief of the staff in what we are trying to do and employing people from customer care backgrounds so patients enjoy the experience of being here when they walk through the door. Creating the right environment is really important.”