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19 July 2019 | Dental Practices

Two dental practices in Lancashire sold through Christie & Co highlight strength of regional market

Specialist business property adviser, Christie & Co has completed on the sales of two dental practices in Lancashire, Jim Benson & Associates in Blackpool and Smilesite in Preston, in separate transactions.

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Occupying a prominent position on the edge of the city centre. Jim Benson & Associates is a long-established mixed dental practice and comprises four well fitted surgeries. The practice has been established in its current location for 55 years and has been operated by Principal Jim Benson since 1990. The practice was purchased two bank-funded first time buyers.

Former principal owner, Jim Benson comments, “Having been at my practice for over 38 years, it was a big decision for me to put it on the market. After a false start with another agent, I found Christie & Co and Jonathan Watson, who was down to earth and gave practical and realistic advice. The sales process can be lengthy and challenging but I was guided through it by Jonathan and by Helen and her team at Clarke Willmott. They were always on hand when I needed advice and encouragement. Both Jonathan and Helen were extremely approachable and professional and immediately put me in contact with specialist firms required in the selling process. I would be more than happy to recommend them.”



Smilesite is a reputable private dental practice occupying a prominent city centre location in Preston. Established over 100 years ago, Smilesite maintains an excellent reputation for providing high quality family dentistry. The practice was acquired by previous owners, Philip Schofield and Matthew Richards, in 1990, and has been purchased by a first time buyer, Joao Costa.

Matthew Richards, former principal at Smilesite comments, “Many thanks to all concerned in the sale of our practice, Christie & Co for quickly introducing a buyer in Joao, and Helen, Emma and Sarah at Clark Wilmott, who were always available to discuss progress.”

Jonathan Watson, Director at Christie & Co handled both sales and comments, “Despite the challenges with recruitment of dentists that practice owners are facing across many parts of Lancashire and Cumbria, we are still seeing strong demand for well established mixed practices such as Jim Benson & Associates. Smilesite, on the other hand, is the latest example of the increased appetite for well-located private practices in the North West.”

Helen Wong, Partner at Clarke Willmott LLP acted on behalf of the vendors in both transactions and comments, “It was a pleasure to assist Jim Benson with the sale of his practice. The sale process is not an easy one – having run the practice for so long, there is also attachment to the patients and staff and at times, this journey was an emotional roller coaster. I wish Jim and his wife, Julie all the best as they embark on a well deserved holiday to New York.

“Working with Philip Schofield and Matthew Richards in the sale of their practice, Smilesite was a joy and I am delighted that this sale is now complete. Phil is staying on as an associate so it was imperative that we kept good relations with the new owner. I’m so pleased for both Philip and Matthew. Huge congratulations. It was great working with you all.”

Clare Emery from Harrison Clark Rickerbys & NASDAL acted for the buyers of Jim Benson & Associates, and Daniel Gianferrari from O’Neill Patient Solicitors & NASDAL acted for the buyer of Smilesite.

Daniel Gianferrari comments, “It was a pleasure to help Joao acquire their first practice in what was a pretty smooth transaction, thanks to the hard work of everyone involved. I have worked with Christie & Co on a number of dental transactions and find them to be professional, personable and collaborative. Jonathan’s knowledge of the dental sector, positive attitude and great interpersonal skills are extremely useful to call upon if a deal gets to a sticking point.”