Prairie Represents Dental Designs in its Sale to an Employee Stock Ownership Plan

OAKBROOK TERRACE, IL – December 20, 2022 – Prairie Capital Advisors, Inc. (“Prairie”), a leading middle-market investment bank, acted as financial advisor to Dental Designs in the sale of the company to an employee stock ownership plan.

Dr. Padilla and his wife, Ms. Santiago, had the idea to launch a versatile dental company in Southwest Florida. In 2004, Dental Designs was created and began to incorporate knowledgeable doctors and staff to provide the best care, from simple general dentistry to total dental reconstructions. They have two locations in Naples, FL and Fort Myers, FL, with a total of 70 employees. The couple had a vision to create a company that is stable and healthy and has values of ethics and integrity rooted at their core. They believe in the importance of job stability and quality jobs to better improve the community they’re placed in.

Prairie worked closely with the management team and sellers, providing advisory expertise and managing the preparatory, due diligence and negotiation phases of the transaction, as well as structuring the financing for the transaction. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. “Our vision of an ESOP started as an idea, but Prairie helped us turn it into a reality. We are very proud to share ownership with our employees and we’re excited for the future,” says Dr. Andre Padilla, Chief Financial Officer of Dental Designs. Chief of Operations, Solymar Santiago-Norat added, “My mission was to create a positive work environment while giving the best dentistry patients deserve. I never imagined I would be able to share our growth with our employees, who also work hard and care for our offices just like we do. I have the utmost respect for Prairie, which shares the same values as we do and worked so hard to help us achieve this new milestone.”

“It was a pleasure working with the Padilla family and the Dental Design team throughout the entire process. They are very committed to employee ownership and having an employee-based culture. They have built an incredible dental practice and I know they will bean incredible ESOP company as well,” commented Tim Jamison, Director at Prairie. “We are excited that the ESOP was the ideal strategy for the company and all of its stakeholders,” added Hillary Hughes, Director at Prairie. “The company has all of the essential characteristics to be a very successful ESOP company in the future.”

About Prairie Capital Advisors

Prairie offers investment banking, ESOP advisory, valuations & opinions and financial reporting valuations to support the growth and ownership transition strategies of middle-market companies. Headquartered in Oakbrook Terrace Illinois, the company is a leading advisor to closely-held companies nationwide. In 2022, Prairie was named ESOP Investment Bank of the Year by M&A Atlas. For more information, visit


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