Dental remains the primary revenue generator for Abano and the sector provided 69% of Abano’s gross revenues in FY14. Over the past five years, gross revenue from our dental sector has grown over 100% from $92.1 million to $188.4 million. We expect this trend to continue as we invest into acquisition and organic growth in the very large and attractive trans-Tasman dental market.
We are continuing to build scale through acquisition and had 154 dental practices as at financial year end.
Organic growth was also a key focus during the year with extended clinical hours, increased patient buy-in to treatment plans and an emphasis on attracting new patients as we look at ways to increase the utilisation of our existing infrastructure. In New Zealand, this included the continuation of our successful Lumino marketing campaign, increasingly supported by online tools to improve the organisation’s interaction with Lumino customers.
We continued to invest into building strong organisational cultures with on-going investment into systems, communication and infrastructure to support our people in our two very large and widely spread dental networks. To assist with this, a number of new senior management appointments have been made in Australia, including, in recent days, a full time and highly experienced marketing manager to assist the organisation in a roll-out of a common brand and the development of consumer marketing strategies for implementation by FY16.
The increasing size of our dental group is providing a stronger negotiating position with suppliers and more economies of scale are being realised and achieved. The trans-Tasman integration of shared resources was extended to a common Chief Information Officer and a Procurement Manager to coordinate the centralisation of purchasing for both groups and to realise additional scale synergies.
The dental sector result in FY14 was impacted by the weak Australian dollar, which masked the performance of the Australian dental business, Dental Partners, with gross revenues depressed by $14.3 million and underlying EBITDA by $1.8 million had the exchange rate been the same as in FY13.