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Sunday / June 16.
HomemibusinessDale Rolfe Group Moves to George & Matilda

Dale Rolfe Group Moves to George & Matilda

George & Matilda Eyecare continues to grow, announcing the acquisition of Dale Rolfe’s group of nine New South Wales (NSW) practices.

Mr Rolfe and his team were welcomed to the group soon after George & Matilda announced the acquisitions of Albany Creek Optometrists, Queensland and Optometrist Menai, NSW.

I feel like there is a window of opportunity to get the best value for your business at the moment, with competitive tendering increasing sale prices for quality practices, but I don’t believe this will last forever

Mr Rolfe joins with a wealth of knowledge and experience gained over 35 years of practice ownership. A former Director of Eyecare Plus since 2010, he was Deputy Chairman of the board since 2014, a member of the Australian Optometry Association and a longstanding member of the Australian Optometric Panel. Mr Rolfe said it was with mixed feelings that he decided to sell his practices to George & Matilda Eyecare as part of his succession plan.

“Eyecare Plus has been my home, almost since its inception, and the members and staff there have been like family. Membership of Eyecare Plus has gone a long way to helping me build a very strong business that has been able to compete in the ever-changing environment of Australian optometry. With branding, business and marketing support, my practices and the practices of my neighbour Eyecare Plus members have outperformed even the biggest corporates through cooperative advertising and sharing of strategies.”

Mr Rolfe said he would recommend Eyecare Plus as “the perfect vehicle to improve a business – for both young optometrists starting out and anyone who wants to take their business to the next level”.

However, for his group of nine practices, he said selling into a group was essential to realise the full value of his efforts.

“An independent buying the business in one go was just not a possibility, so I needed to look at a community of independents to help with my succession plan,” he explained.

“I feel like there is a window of opportunity to get the best value for your business at the moment, with competitive tendering increasing sale prices for quality practices, but I don’t believe this will last forever.

“I was pleasantly surprised at just how valuable my practice was and this allowed me to make the decision to sell earlier than I had envisaged,” added Mr Rolfe.

Having been approached by a number of corporates, he said George & Matilda Eyecare felt like the best fit.

“I like the idea that G&M… has all the scale and benefits of a corporate but with an independent heart”, said Mr Rolfe. “G&M ensures that all my practice staff retain their positions, and all the optometrists are given full independence in their clinical decision making. There is no reduction in appointment times and optometrists can continue to follow their passion around their specialties. Better still, G&M is Australian owned and run.” Mr Rolfe will become a contractor to G&M, tasked with helping other independents who are looking to facilitate their own succession plan. Having personally worked through selling his practices to the organisation, he will be a conduit between the practitioner and G&M, helping the seller through the intricacies of preparing for a sale.

“I’m looking forward to helping others who are ready to grab the opportunity to get the best price in decades for their practice and to make the decision as pain free as possible,” he said.

Growth Continues

In late July, George & Matilda acquired Albany Creek Optometrists in Albany Creek Village, Queensland. Previously a ProVision practice, the business is led by optometrist Philip Brinin, who has provided care to the local community for over 32 years.

That same month, George & Matilda acquired Optometrist Menai in NSW, signing on Jason (Daesong) Yang and the team. Mr Yang said, “As G&M is fast growing and a leader in the optical industry in Australia, our business will be supported more than ever. It is very simple; we continue to look after our customers and patients and G&M will do the rest. I think it is a perfect business model for the independent practice as we can spend more time with our customers and patients for a better experience. I no longer need to worry about payroll, invoicing, marketing, advertising, system security and competition, and the list goes on.”

Caption: Dale Rolfe.