By Aisha Anwar
With the fortification of the GAOC Group of Companies, it’s easy to forget the struggle that Dr. Steve Mark Gan underwent to get to where he is today. “I got back from the States in 1998 with only PHP 3,000 in my savings, and a third-hand dental chair. We started out in my dad’s place in Chinatown. It was a very simple practice,” he humbly shares. After the opportunity to join St. Luke’s Medical Centre Quezon City, Dr. Gan began conceptualizing GAOC’s early stages. In 2001, the first GAOC clinic was established. Currently with ten premium branches going strong and another on its way, GAOC provides a range of services from general dentistry to dental implants—Dr. Gan’s specialty. Under the GAOC Group of Companies, he has also instituted a second-tier expansion, the Novodental clinics.
Not one to settle on his current successes, Dr. Gan had grasped the opportunity to tackle the technological sphere, effectively ushering in the Samurai Dental Laboratory wherein state-of-the-art prosthesis and implants are manufactured, and the Gan Tech Industries (GTI) which focuses on technology distribution. Moreover, Dental News Philippines educates fellow associates, mentors, and even students on all the necessary applied sciences and technology. “We do not only want ourselves to be advanced. We want to share it with our colleagues in the profession,” he explains.
Along with his notable assembly, GAOC has grown synonymous for its top-of-the-line equipment. No expense is spared in achieving the highest of standards for Filipinos. Moving toward a completely digital structure, GAOC currently stands as one of the very few, if not the only 100% digital dental businesses in the Philippines. Refusing to live up to the conventional disposition many have with regards to visiting your dentist, GAOC has mastered the personalized technique in sustaining an inviting environment coupled with the finest patient care. The customized, tech-savvy approach to dentistry evokes a touch of charm and luxury, dispels any fearful notions, virtually setts a spa-like atmosphere, calma the mind and body, and grants an all-around feel-good experience for its clientele.
Aware that not everyone can afford his services, Dr. Gan openhandedly extends his support to those who truly need his aid. At present, he conducts monthly medical missions, likewise shouldering the cost for a handful of surgeries and procedures. “The work is never enough and never ending, so we want to give back our blessings,” he mentions. While Dr. Gan works on helping those who cannot afford his services, he also looks to creating opportunities for his workforce. Through the GAOC Foundation, money is raised to facilitate educational scholarships for employees and staff, allowing them and their families a chance to obtain college degrees. Furthering his passion, Dr. Gan now wants to focus on giving back particularly to the dental community. In instituting the GAOC Dental Academy, Dr. Gan is able to develop the minds of the next generation of dentists. Set to match international standards, the GAOC Dental Academy will undoubtedly grant students the platform to learn from esteemed professionals from around the globe.
While most international graduates prefer to work abroad, Dr. Gan viewed his global experiences as a chance to return to his motherland and develop the dental standards in the Philippines. The GAOC Group of Companies is the realization of Dr. Gan’s dreams; the result of humble beginnings driven by devotion. Through his perseverance, Dr. Steve Mark Gan has harvested monumental change in local dentistry, cultivating a brand that is set to live beyond its name.
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Shot on location at the Conrad Manila | Photography by JC Inocian | Grooming by Cats Del Rosario | Styling by Rex Atienza, Jay Sarmiento and Jowi Guzman of StyleList Inc. (Dr. Gan dressed in Zegna)