GEORGETOWN, Texas, Jan. 5, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Smile Doctors, the largest and fastest growing orthodontics-focused dental support organization (“OSO”) in the U.S., with more than 295 locations, announced a strategic investment from Thomas H. Lee Partners, L.P. (“THL”), a premier private equity firm investing in growth companies. THL is investing alongside existing financial sponsor Linden Capital Partners (“Linden”) in an equal partnership. Affiliated orthodontists will retain a significant ownership stake in the organization. The new partnership will support Smile Doctors’ efforts of continued growth and expanded service offerings.

“As we focus on making quality orthodontic care accessible to more people across the United States, we are thrilled to welcome our new partners at THL,” said J. Hedrick, CEO of Smile Doctors. “Along with our existing partners at Linden, we are excited about the opportunity to create new partnerships with thriving practices and continue to expand our services through this new relationship. This partnership allows our team members to remain committed to providing excellent care in our communities with all-inclusive orthodontic treatment that results in beautiful, confident smiles and genuine, unforgettable experiences.”

“We have been very impressed with Smile Doctors’ proven track record of delivering best-in-class services and achieving exceptional patient satisfaction. We look forward to supporting the company’s doctors as they grow and extend this model of patient-centric care,” said Joshua Nelson, Managing Director and Head of Healthcare at THL. “Smile Doctors is the platform of choice for clinicians at every stage of their careers,” said Megan Preiner, Managing Director at THL. “We are committed to helping the Company’s talented, affiliated orthodontists grow their practices and extend patient access to best-in-industry resources and services.”

“We are proud of the strong growth and performance at Smile Doctors since our initial investment in 2017 and look forward to continuing to support J. and the Smile Doctors team,” said Tony Davis, President and Managing Partner at Linden. “We are excited to partner with THL and believe our combined resources, experience, and capital will help drive continued success going forward,” added Mike Watts, Partner at Linden.

Kirkland & Ellis acted as legal advisor, William Blair and Houlihan Lokey acted as financial advisors, and Ernst & Young acted as accounting advisor to Smile Doctors.

Kirkland & Ellis acted as legal advisor, Jefferies acted as financial advisor, and Deloitte acted as accounting advisor to THL.

About Smile Doctors, LLC
Smile Doctors, LLC, is the largest orthodontics focused dental support organization (OSO) in the U.S. The company has the fastest-growing network of award-winning orthodontists. With more than 295 convenient locations in 25 states, Smile Doctors has a rich history of developing and growing affiliated practices by providing tools and technology that allow their orthodontists to focus entirely on patient care. Smile Doctors is the largest network of Diamond Plus Invisalign® providers. Smile Doctors orthodontists are proud members of the American Association of Orthodontists, American Dental Association, and host for the Lecture Center for Orthodontic Excellence. Smile Doctors’ mission is to create confident smiles that inspire the best in their patients, each other, and the communities they serve. For more information, please visit

About Thomas H. Lee Partners
Thomas H. Lee Partners, L.P. (“THL”) is a premier private equity firm investing in middle-market growth companies exclusively in three sectors: Healthcare, Financial Services, and Technology & Business Solutions. THL couples deep sector expertise through an Identified Sector Opportunity (“ISO”) process with dedicated internal operating resources from its Strategic Resource Group (“SRG”) to transform and build great companies of lasting value in partnership with management. The Firm’s domain expertise and resources help to build great companies with an aim to accelerate growth, improve operations and drive long-term sustainable value. Since 1974, THL has raised more than $30 billion of equity capital, invested in over 160 companies and completed more than 500 add-on acquisitions representing an aggregate enterprise value at acquisition of over $210 billion. For more information, please visit:

About Linden Capital Partners
Linden Capital Partners is a Chicago-based private equity firm focused exclusively on the healthcare industry. Founded in 2004, Linden is one of the country’s largest dedicated healthcare private equity firms. Linden’s strategy is based upon three elements: (i) healthcare specialization, (ii) integrated private equity and operating expertise, and (iii) its differentiated human capital program. Linden invests in middle market platforms in the medical products, specialty distribution, pharmaceutical, and services segments of healthcare. Since its founding, Linden has invested in over 40 healthcare companies encompassing over 200 total transactions. The firm has raised over $6 billion in limited partner commitments since inception. For more information, please visit

SOURCE Smile Doctors, LLC