Glasgow’s dental gallery widens smile

10 February, 2011 / Infocus

Andrew Bruce joined RBS as a student. He’s still with the bank but now on a professional level as he launches his brand new practice in Glasgow’s West End.

“We’ve got 27,000 students on our doorstep – these are potentially future professionals,” says Andrew. “We’re not going totally private, so we can offer these students a good entry level service.”

Although he’s had his own practice since 1998, this latest phase in the development of the company, with the opening of the Glasgow Smile Gallery, is the most exciting by far. A member of the British Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, Andrew has completed a raft of postgraduate courses and training in New York, Dubai and London, to offer the highest levels of cosmetic dentistry to his clients.

“Over the past 10 or 15 years dentistry has changed quite dramatically and I want to be at the forefront of that,” Andrew states. “We’ve got the opportunity here to do something different – not just the same boring, clinical dental surgery, but something that offers a unique destination for all customers and is open to everybody. The location of the new practice reflects that. This is a happening, aspirational place and customers expect exceptional surroundings as well as service.”

Sharing the vision

Scheduled to open in early 2011, it was a hectic period before opening with tight, immovable deadlines to meet in the purchase and transformation of the three-story townhouse where the practice is now based.

“There was lots of different dimensions to put in place – the biggest issue from the outset was finance,” explains Andrew. “Although I’d banked with RBS for a number of years, I’d always run a fairly tight ship. Yes, I had an overdraft, but I’d never really used it.

“From the newspapers, it sounded like the banks and RBS in particular just weren’t lending, so I made sure that I did my due diligence and I was speaking to two other banks as well. But, when I showed RBS my business plan, they were happy. I was really impressed by their drive and their experience of the sector, as well as the professional way they handled the deal. They were always aware of the timeline and really good at meeting it.

“Everyone I met at RBS could see and understand my vision and they were willing to be a part of it. They also worked well with the architects and lawyers, for example in the change of use paperwork, which made all the difference to the transaction process.”

The bank was also open to the specific type of financial support that Andrew required. As well as providing funding for the business mortgage, Andrew’s preference was for an overdraft rather than a term loan. This would give him the flexibility to pay down the debt as soon as possible, rather than over a specific term.

Specialist sector expertise

The bank’s healthcare sector specialists also understand the ins and outs of the practice requirements, and Andrew describes Healthcare manager Bill Dickson as ‘fantastic at getting things done’.

With clients travelling from all over the world – from North America to the Mediterranean – to visit Andrew’s existing practice, he’s optimistic that his business objectives will be realised.

“We want to grow our commercially strong brand with honesty, transparency and integrity. We will also serve the population of Glasgow with exceptional customer service, a high level of expertise and fantastic dentistry.

“This is going to be a slightly edgier, funkier dental practice, offering beauty services, implants, botox and plastic surgery consultation. Known as the Glasgow Smile Gallery, it’ll hopefully get Glasgow smiling.”

Glasgow Smile Gallery is looking for an extremely talented, dynamic and ambitious dentist and dental nurse to join our team. If you would like to further your career at this new and innovative practice, please get in touch by emailingor by calling 0141 334 5166

The Glasgow Smile Gallery can be followed on Twitter and Facebook.

To find out how RBS could help your business grow, visit

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