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The founder of India's largest dental chain, Clove Dental, Amarinder Singh

After a bad experience with a dentist, a Harvard graduate created India’s largest dental chain, now worth…

The Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) invested $50 million in Global Dental Services, which operates Clove Dental, in November 2023.

The founder of India’s largest dental chain, Clove Dental, Amarinder Singh, came up with the idea after he and his wife had a bad experience at a dental clinic in Delhi in 2010.

Singh was at a clinic to get a tooth filling. Everything was going smoothly until he had to rinse and spit. He noticed the drain was extremely dirty and unhygienic, which disgusted him. He saw the rot in the drain, which made him want to explore the healthcare market. Singh had recently moved back to India after spending a long time in the United States and Canada, and he was searching for opportunities in the healthcare industry.

clove dental

In 2011, Clove Dental was founded, and it has now grown into a chain of over 350 clinics nationwide with 35,000+ patients and a turnover of over Rs 140 crore in 2019.

Early life

Singh completed his early education in Delhi before attending Rashtriya Military School in Dehradun and later studying in Nigeria. His father worked for a government education officer, while his mother was a school teacher.

In Nigeria, Singh excelled academically and completed his education at 15. He was then admitted to a university to pursue a five-year engineering program.

“I was the youngest among 8,000 Nigerian students, and the only one who wore a turban. There were also only 12 foreigners in the student community. Unfortunately, this made me the target of bullying, teasing, and picking on. As a result, I withdrew into myself, and focused solely on my studies, avoiding any distractions,” he recalled.

In 1989, he finished his studies and started working as a manager in a plant. Then, he got a scholarship to study at the prestigious Waterloo University in Canada, where he earned his master’s degree in Engineering. He felt like he didn’t fit in because he looked and talked Indian but acted Nigerian. To cope with this feeling, he threw himself into his studies and eventually won the gold medal at the department level.

He worked as a Supply Chain Manager in different popular companies in Canada, such as Proctor and Gamble and Warner-Lambert Pharmaceuticals. He was paid a lot of money for this job.

Later, he went to Harvard Business School and completed his MBA in 1998. Then, he moved to San Francisco to create a company called Simplexis with two friends from Harvard. This company was about teaching other companies how to do business better. He got $35 million from investors in March 2000, and the company was even in Time Magazine. However, they sold the business in 2002.

During this time, he married in 2000 and had a daughter in 2003. He took a six-month break from work to be with his family.

Then, in 2010, he decided to move to India. This was a big decision for him, but it was worth it. He said he had a “midlife crisis” and wanted to be with his parents in Delhi. He has been living there ever since.

Beginning of Clove Dental

Amarinder Singh founded Clove Dental, India’s largest dental chain provider. He started the business after experiencing a gap in dental healthcare, a need for more awareness in India, and a negative experience at a dentist. He invested 1 million USD (Rs 7 crore) of his own money and funds from friends and family to set up the first Clove Dental clinic.

According to Amarinder, dental care in India needed to be improved in various areas, such as infrastructure, hygiene, and sterilization. He realized that while most Indians needed some form of dental care, only ten percent went to a qualified dentist. To address this issue, he opened 600 dental clinics in 10 years, becoming a renowned dental care provider across India in just a few years.

Amarinder invented a “middle of the pack” pricing model after studying the pricing of other clinics. Each clinic costs around Rs 30 lakh, as 80 to 85 percent of the medical equipment, instruments, and machinery is imported.

Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) recently invested $50 million (Rs 417 crore) in Investcorp-backed Global Dental Services, which runs Clove Dental. The business has also been recognized as the Top Tech Driven Dental Chain by Times Business Awards 2023. They have effectively used technology to revolutionize the dental industry across India.

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