As we prepare for the year ahead, I want to share a summary of conversations I’ve had in recent months with IDSO/DSO leadership nationwide, as well as our insights on the dental mergers and acquisitions (M&A) markets.
Valuations Remain High, For Now
2022 was one of our busiest years. Our clients enjoyed rich multiples and favorable deal structures with the best DSOs in the nation. We currently have more deals in the market than ever, and we’re consistently seeing bidding wars and multiple offers. Buyers are complaining that they cannot keep paying these rich multiples much longer and that they must be selective in how they spend their money, but for every buyer that bows out, two new buyers appear. There were at least 20 private equity- (PE) backed DSOs formed in 2022, and they must buy practices to grow and meet the needs of their investors. Q1 is always a fascinating time in M&A markets: fresh off the busiest M&A closing season, there are never enough sellers to meet buyer demand. Each year this results in bidding wars and premiums paid by buyers through the first four to five months of the year. The first half of 2023 will be fast-paced, resulting in excellent deals for sellers.