Avant Dental Group

Achieving the Dream: Avant Dental Group Thriving in Kissimmee

Florida SBDC at UCF – Osceola County Assists Dentist with Locating, Funding, Opening, and Growing New Dental Clinic

February 20, 2024


Contact: Hal Thayer, Communications Director, FSBDC at UCF, 407.420.4850 or hthayer@ucf.edu

                 Rafael E. M. Pratts, Area Manager, FSBDC at UCF – Osceola County, 407.847.2458 or rpratts@ucf.edu

Orlando, FL – Helping entrepreneurs turn their dream of small business ownership into a reality is an imperative for the Florida Small Business Development Center at the University of Central Florida (FSBDC at UCF). When dentist Margarita Romero decided that the time had come for her to realize her vision of owning her own dental office, she knew she would be starting from scratch. Her first steps would be to determine the best location for her new practice, decide whether to build, buy, or lease an office space, and to evaluate the kinds of properties that were available. Certainly, a tall order. After describing her ideas and plans to her banker, he referred Dr. Romero to the FSBDC at UCF to assist her in her quest.

With more than 10 years of experience as a dentist in her native Peru, and more recently 6 years practicing in the United States, Dr. Romero certainly had the knowledge and expertise needed to build a successful dental practice wherever she might wish. Working with the FSBDC, she arrived at several requisites to be met to realize her goal of launching a dental clinic serving the Hispanic community and offering high-quality dental services for the entire family. From cleanings and whitening to orthodontic and endodontic treatments, she envisioned a team of highly trained professionals to help you, as she likes to say, “achieve the smile you’ve always wanted.” “For us, it is very important to treat the patient like family,” Dr. Romero shares, “and not as just a simple patient.”

In addition to being an experienced and caring dentist, Dr. Romero is a savvy businesswoman. She decided early on that there were three requirements the location of her new business must possess: one, that it be in close proximity to her home and community; two, that it be in an area that was experiencing population growth; and three, that it not already have a heavy density of existing dental offices. With those criteria established, the FSBDC set to work conducting market research to identify potential locations and opportunities for the soon-to-be dental clinic. Using expansive market data resources, the FSBDC investigated possible options by zip codes, local demographics, available dental practices in Central Florida, and more.

“After I started with the FSBDC, they did all the studies of the area and identified where the best area was for me,” recalls Dr. Romero. “After that, we started looking for the dental office itself and continued with the loan process with the bank. The first step was the bank recommending the FSBDC, then they did the research and gave me all the information, and then we found the right office, obtained our loan, and opened our clinic,” she explained.

“My personal experience with the FSBDC was wonderful,” Dr. Romero affirms. “I’m very, very happy because they gave me all the help I needed.” Avant Dental Group has now been open for a year in Kissimmee, FL and the practice is growing. Most recently, consultant Rafael E. M. Pratts, the area manager for the FSBDC at UCF’s Osceola County office, has been helping Dr. Romero with planning and implementing her marketing and business development plans, as well as introducing her to local organizations and business networks. Dr. Romero is seeing her dream of owning her own dental practice come true, and the FSBDC is proud it was able to complement her vision and passion and to help make business ownership happen for her through consulting, market research, and assistance securing needed funds.

For information about Avant Dental Clinic, please visit https://avantdentalgroup.com/.


About the FSBDC at UCF

Hosted by the University of Central Florida (UCF), and with its main office in the National Entrepreneur Center located at the Fashion Square Mall in Orlando, the Florida Small Business Development Center at the University of Central Florida (FSBDC at UCF) is part of part of UCF’s Office of the President and the Florida SBDC Network.

The Florida SBDC at UCF provides aspiring and existing small businesses with no-cost consulting, low-cost training, and access to business data and research resources. In addition to its core service offering, the Florida SBDC at UCF also offers specialized services to qualifying companies, including capital access, market growth, government contracting, international trade, business continuation, cybersecurity, disaster planning and recovery, and more. The FSBDC at UCF serves an eight-county area that includes Brevard, Flagler, Lake, Orange, Osceola, Seminole, Sumter, and Volusia counties and maintains 9 service centers across Central Florida.

In 2022, the FSBDC at UCF served more than 2,700 entrepreneurs in Central Florida with consulting services, resulting in more than 10,600 jobs created, retained or saved; $793.9 million in sales growth; $66.7 million in capital formation; $103.8 million in government contract awards; and 160 new businesses started. For more information, please visit www.sbdcorlando.com.

About the Florida SBDC Network

For more than 45 years, the Florida SBDC Network, the state’s principal provider of business assistance [Fl. Stat. 288.001], has nourished a statewide partnership between higher education and economic development to provide existing and emerging small and medium-sized business owners with management and knowledge resources that enable overall growth, increased profitability, and economic prosperity for Florida’s economy.

In 2022, the Florida SBDC Network delivered 117,750 hours of consulting to 14,758 small business clients – resulting in business owners securing $446 million in capital, $445 million in government contracting, impacting 23,515 jobs, increasing sales by over $4.5 billion, and creating 825 businesses.

With over 40 offices statewide, the Florida SBDC is funded in part by the U.S. Small Business Administration, Department of Defense, State of Florida and other private and public partners. The Florida SBDC Network, headquartered at the University of West Florida, is nationally accredited by the Association of SBDCs and is a recipient of the President’s E Award for Export Service. Florida SBDC services are extended to the public on a nondiscriminatory basis. Language assistance services are available for individuals with limited English proficiency. For more information, please visit www.FloridaSBDC.org.

FSBDC at UCF | 3201 E. Colonial Drive | Orlando, FL 32801 | p 407.420.4850 | f 407.420.4862
sbdc@ucf.edu | www.sbdcorlando.com