Vatsalya Centre for Oral Health, which runs two dental clinics in Bangalore, said on Tuesday it has raised Rs 11 crore ($1.65 million) in its pre-Series A funding round from US-based S-Squared Capital Investments.
The funds will be used to expand operations, improve technology and hire employees, Vatsalya founder and CEO Srivats Bharadwaj said in a statement.
The company, which was founded in 2003, aims to go for the next round of funding within a year, Bharadwaj told VCCircle.
Vatsalya is looking to add two centres in the next one year and has plans to go pan-India, he added. The company also offers home dental care services where it charges only the transportation cost as extra, Bharadwaj said.
“We believe a large part of the gap in the ecosystem can be filled by efficiently managing the supply chain and negotiating competitive pricing with dental material suppliers. This brings down the cost of treatment and helps to achieve economies of scale,” he said.
Bharadwaj said there is one dentist for every 10,000 people in urban areas in India. In rural areas, however, there is one dentist for 150,000 people. This is an indication of the challenge that exists in the country when it comes to oral health, he said.
A number of dental chains in India have attracted venture capital and private equity funding over the past few years as the segment grows. Other funded players in the industry include Axiss Dental, MyDentist, Smile Merchants and Denty’s.
In a similar segment, Gurgaon-based Leixir Resources got $12 million funding from Atlanta-based Source Capital and serial healthcare entrepreneur GSK Velu last month.