Snowbird Finance Limited is pleased to announce that they have received full authorisation from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) for their credit broking services. This authorisation enables Snowbird to continue...
'Our practice expansion project was incredibly complex, requiring both loans and equipment finance. Snowbird really understood what we wanted to achieve and the timescales we needed to do it in. They were great to work with. Nothing was too much trouble and they delivered an exceptional service'
The Stradbrook Centre Ltd
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SNOWBIRD FINANCE LTD RECEIVES FULL AUTHORISATION FROM THE FCA
3rd July 2015
Snowbird Finance Limited is pleased to announce that they have received full authorisation from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) for their credit broking services. This authorisation enables Snowbird to continue to offer consumer credit and carry out other regulated activities but to have to meet certain requirements on approved persons, reporting and complaints procedures. It also enables Snowbird to appoint both Appointed Representatives and Introducer Appointed Representatives ("IARs").
Snowbird's Managing Director Simon Freeman commented, "We are very proud to have been allocated full permission from the FCA, the UK's financial services governing body. This authorisation means we are legally bound by the rules of the FCA, giving peace of mind to customers that they are receiving the best service possible and are treated fairly at all times."
SNOWBIRD FINANCE NSK ARTICLE - THE PROBE, JUNE 2015
24th June 2015
Dental handpieces and small equipment are some of the most important instruments in a dental practice, but buying the latest technology needn't use up your hard-earned capital. Simon Freeman explains how you can obtain new state-of-the-art equipment for a small monthly fee with an NSK Rental Plan.
Click here to download the full article from this month's Probe magazine.
REGISTRATION FOR BDIA DENTAL SHOWCASE NOW OPEN
3rd June 2015
The most highly anticipated dental event of the year, BDIA Dental Showcase has officially opened registration for 2015. This year's event will be held on 22-24 October at the NEC in Birmingham.
BDIA Dental Showcase is the UK's largest B2B dental trade show, with the 2014 show seeing over 9,500 audited visitors through the door. With many more speakers and industry specialists in attendance, BDIA Dental Showcase is the ultimate place to explore the latest products and technologies, make purchasing decisions and broaden your knowledge. Our specially developed lecture programme provides short, focussed sessions delivered by experts both on stands and in the two mini-lecture theatres will keep you up to date with the latest developments in the industry.
By attending BDIA Dental Showcase you will have the opportunity to meet over three hundred exhibitors and to get hands-on experience of the most comprehensive range of dental equipment, materials and services available in the UK.
BDIA's Executive Director Tony Reed said: "Every year BDIA Dental Showcase continues to deliver what attendees want – new products, good deals and an opportunity to broaden knowledge in the CPD verifiable mini lecture sessions. Many of our visitors come back year after year and use BDIA Dental Showcase as a platform to see new products and learn about what's new in dentistry."
"With counterfeit and substandard dental devices becoming a growing problem within the UK dental sector, it is more important than ever to be able to rely on suppliers. Dental Showcase provides the opportunity to create and build relationships with reputable companies giving the reassurance that you need when investing in your business."
Don't miss the dental event of the year! Register now to secure your free ticket.
Register now, it's easy:
Phone: 01494 782873
Text: Your name, postal address, occupation and GDC number to 07786 206276
SNOWBIRD TO REVEAL BESPOKE EXHIBITION STAND TO LAUNCH NEW FINANCE PRODUCT AT OPTRAFAIR 2015
15th April 2015
Snowbird Finance will be showcasing their Long Funding Lease product on a brand new exhibition stand at Optrafair at NEC Birmingham from Saturday 18th – Monday 20th April.
A Long Funding Lease can enable opticians for the first time to take advantage of their 100% annual investment allowances without affecting or even losing their VAT reclaim under the de minimis rules. To find out more visit Snowbird at Optrafair, the UK's leading exhibition and educational conference for optical professionals. Snowbird will be exhibiting with a stunning contemporary stand created by ESM. We will be offering free coffee and cupcakes, as well as running a lucky dip competition with a daily opportunity to win an iPhone 6. It's the ideal place to chat to some of our friendly staff and to meet John Hood, who has recently joined us as Business Development Manager for Optics and comes with many years of experience selling optical equipment.
Snowbird specialise in providing tailored finance packages to meet the unique requirements of optical professionals. With a focus on funding for equipment, practice purchases, business & personal loans and vehicle finance, we provide a comprehensive yet bespoke offering for optical practices. We aim to take the hassle out of arranging finance by giving optical professionals quick and easy access to low rates and flexible payment terms. Our 20 years of experience means we really do understand your industry and can find you the most tax efficient package through our network of leading lenders, delivered with superior service.
Sophie-Louise Cook, Marketing Manager at Snowbird said, "After our successes at Optrafair last year we are really excited to be returning with a bigger and better stand designed for us by the team at ESM. The bespoke stand has been designed to reflect the Snowbird brand whilst showcasing our Long Funding Lease product and it provides a welcoming area for optical professionals to relax and talk to our staff about the most tax efficient funding options available for their circumstances."
Snowbird will be at Optrafair on stand number F67 at NEC Birmingham from 18th – 20th April. To register to attend Optrafair, visit www.optrafair.co.uk.
JOHN HOOD JOINS SNOWBIRD FINANCE
7th April 2015
Snowbird Finance Ltd is delighted to announce today that John Hood has joined the company to assist their expansion in the optical sector.
John Hood joins the team from Carl Zeiss where he spent 20 years as a high-tech diagnostic equipment salesman. John will now be Business Development Manager for Optics at Snowbird and brings with him a wealth of experience and a vast network of industry contacts.
John has spent his entire career working with optical and medical equipment; both in sales, training and product development services. John comments, "My combination of knowledge and experience, coupled with Snowbird's understanding of the optical profession and their high standards of specialist finance services is an opportunity too good to miss. I look forward to working with such a dynamic team and building on the reputation of Snowbird in optics."
Simon Freeman, Managing Director of Snowbird added, "John is a great addition to the team and his appointment demonstrates once more our commitment to being the leading provider of healthcare finance in the UK. We look forward to working with John, using his skills and expertise to build on our reputation and developing new relationships with optical suppliers and professionals."
For PR and marketing enquiries, contact Sophie-Louise Cook email@example.com or call 01932 450542.
NASDAL SURVEY SHOWS PROFITS OF THE AVERAGE PRIVATE DENTAL PRACTICE OUTSTRIP NHS
25th March 2015
The average profit of private dental practices in the UK has crept ahead of average NHS practices for the first time in nearly a decade according to the latest benchmarking statistics from the National Association of Specialist Dental Accountants and Lawyers(NASDAL).
The profit differential is small, with an average NHS practice making a profit of £129,000 per principal, compared to £131,000 in a private practice but some strong performances in private practice in the financial year 2013-14 tipped the balance.
And that's not all, the picture for all dental practices is improving, said Ian Simpson, a Chartered Accountant and a partner in Humphrey and Co, which carries out the statistical exercise. "Income and profits are up across the board with all types of practice seeing increased profit and relatively unchanging costs. Fee income is up by £7k per principal in a typical NHS practice and by £23k in a typical private practice."
He said that private practices suffered in the years following the 2008 slump but have gradually picked up. This is partly due to private practices having greater control over their income than NHS practices and hence having a greater ability to recover from poor trading results in the recession.
In 2013/14, the average gross fee income generated by a dentist working in a private practice was £248,000, compared to £180,000 for a dentist in an NHS practice. Meanwhile, practice expenses equate to 65% of fee income for a NHS practice compared to 68% for a private practices.
The statistics are gathered annually from accountant members of NASDAL across the UK who together act for 27% of the dental profession. The statistics provide average 'state-of-the-nation' figures so NASDAL accountants can benchmark their clients' earnings and expenditure and help them run their practices more profitably.
Ian said that a variety of key components had remained unchanged: UDA rates are almost identical, as well as business structures, with 58% of the profession being sole traders, and the rest either partnerships or Limited companies. The number of incorporated practices increased by only 3%. Earnings for associates have gone up by just a small amount, at around an average £700 per individual.
Nick Ledingham, of Morris & Co, Specialist Dental Accountants, the Chairman of NASDAL observed that the profit differential between NHS and private practices was small and should be regarded as a trend rather than a significant turning-point.
He commented: "Whilst there are most definitely some very difficult challenges ahead for both NHS dentists and private dentists, we are very pleased to see that the profession appears now to have weathered the economic storm."
Also at the press conference where the figures were announced were representatives of the NASDAL Lawyers' Group, Chairman Andrew Lockhart-Mirams and Jenin Khanam who provided an update on legal issues in the dental world.
NASDAL is an organization of more than 50 firms of accountants and lawyers which specialize in helping dentists. The NASDAL statistics are published annually in March and reflect the finances of dental practices and dentists for the most recent tax year. The latest to be released are for the year ending April 5th 2014, and are taken from the tax returns of NASDAL clients submitted by January 31st 2015.
The NASDAL figures provide a detailed picture of dental practice finances, sourced directly from dentists working in the NHS and privately. The figures published by the Public Health England's Information Centre later in the year reflect the income of NHS dentists only. NASDAL's designation of practices as either private or NHS reflect that 80% of business income comes from that source. The sample size is 650 principals and limited companies, and 600 associates.
DAVID NADEN JOINS SNOWBIRD FINANCE
19th March 2015
Snowbird Finance is pleased to announce that David Naden has joined the team, with responsibility for covering the South West region of the UK. David brings with him a wealth of knowledge, having worked in the healthcare finance industry for over 26 years.
David started his career in the dental industry in 1964 as an equipment service engineer and was a surgery equipment design specialist for two major dental suppliers. He moved into equipment finance in 1986 with Herald Finance and worked as an Area Manager both there and various other finance companies before joining Vector Finance in 2009.
David comments, "I am extremely excited to be working with Simon and the team at Snowbird and I believe that the opportunity that Snowbird can offer my clients in terms of both extended finance facilities and enhanced administrative infrastructure will come with mutual benefits. Snowbird can give me access to their extensive network of lenders, thus increasing my ability to provide the most favourable rates and products to new and existing customers. I hope that I will be able to continue to build on the reputation I have created over my career and look forward to providing clients with the high level of expertise, service and integrity that Snowbird delivers to the healthcare industry."
Simon Freeman, Managing Director added, "We are delighted that someone as well-known and respected as David is working with us at Snowbird, he is an asset to the team enabling us to expand our coverage across the South West region. We are still very much committed to being one of the leading providers of healthcare finance in the UK and look forward to the extended opportunities that David can bring to our business."
For PR and marketing enquiries, please contact Sophie-Louise Cook, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01932 874674.
SNOWBIRD'S £100 CASHBACK OFFER AT 100% OPTICAL
4th February 2015
Visit Snowbird on stand B01 at 100% Optical Show at London Excel from 7th - 9th February.
Collect your £50 note flyer (or download one from the 100% Optical website) and when you arrange your next finance agreement with us, we'll give you and your favourite optical supplier brand new crisp (real) £50 notes to say thank you.
We have £20,000 worth of vouchers to give away at the show so come and talk to our friendly team to find out what great rates and de minimus efficient solutions we can offer on your next finance agreement.
Our Business Development Manager Bill Carr can also provide advice on buying, selling and developing your practice.
LATEST NASDAL GOODWILL SURVEY SHOWS MIXED PRACTICES HAVE MOST ALLURE
22nd January 2015
Dental practices offering both NHS and private treatments have most allure to dental practice purchasers according to the latest goodwill survey from NASDAL for the quarter ending October 31st. Alan Suggett, the NASDAL member who carries out the quarterly survey, said that the average goodwill value secured for a practice with an NHS contract was 164% of turnover and for a mixed practice it was 185% of turnover.
Private practices were on average 88% of turnover so are still less valuable to purchasers than mixed or NHS practices. While the value of deals continues to rise, valuations are lower across the board, said Alan, reflecting a market which still has a lot of volatility. The average goodwill figures for valuations are NHS 113%, private 75%, and mixed 135%.
Russell Abrahams, whose law firm Abrahams Dresden has been responsible for many of the transactions in the most recent quarter, commented that private practices in the right location were starting to attract smaller corporates. "The high premiums being paid for NHS and mixed practices, particularly in the London area, means that, currently, increased interest is being shown in private practices, which are regarded as better value for money."
Alan, a specialist dental accountant and a partner in UNW LLP, said he is surprised by the increasing values of those practices with NHS contracts at a time of potential reform and future uncertainty. He also stressed that there were a number of transactions which varied significantly from the averages, so the survey figures should be seen as providing a rough guideline only.
For further information, contact Caroline Holland on 020 8679 9595/07974 731396
GDC DEFEATED IN LANDMARK LEGAL CASE
5th January 2015
The General Dental Council (GDC), the regulator for dentists and dental care professionals, has been found to have acted unlawfully in a landmark judgement on the 18 December.
The British Dental Association (BDA), initiated judicial review proceedings to prevent the regulator implementing a staggering £15 million pound increase to the fees levied on the dental profession.
The consultation behind the fee rise has been deemed unlawful, but the judge declined to reverse the fee rise, their counsel citing the risk of 'administrative chaos' at the GDC.
The troubled regulator has been taken to task by the Professional Standards Authority and parliament.
In a parliamentary debate, health minister, Dr Dan Poulter, confirmed that he had 'not been presented with compelling evidence to justify the increase' and called on the GDC to make 'significant improvements.'
Sir Paul Beresford MP, who called the debate, accused the regulator of operating a 'bunker mentality'.
The dentists' union was awarded costs, and has now called on government to act on inadequate health regulation.
Mick Armstrong, chair of the British Dental Association, said: 'We regret that it came to this, but there was so much more at stake here than just fees.
'We've seen patients and practitioners left in limbo for over 18 months when complaints are raised, and hearings with an average price tag of £78,000.
'We had to take action because health professionals should not have to subsidise failure of their regulator.
'Today a judge singled out a "gaping hole" in the GDC's arguments.
'The regulator demonstrated it wasn't clear on its own powers and claimed it was facing "administrative chaos".
'And that utter confusion has allowed it to escape the full weight of the law.
'This super-sized fee rise still stands, and now serves as a monument to the failures of health regulation.
'This case has revealed that a regulator, unaccountable to the Government, can be found to have acted unlawfully but still walk away with its ill-gotten gains.
'We are now looking to the government to act.
'The chaos at the GDC serves as a warning to all healthcare professionals.
'The Prime Minister once called for action on the "outdated and inflexible" laws applied by our regulators.
'It's time for the government to honour that pledge, in full.'
The BDA has written to the Department of Health to outline the worrying implications of this case.
CHRISTMAS OPENING HOURS
17th December 2014
The office will be closed on 25th and 26th December and 1st January.
THE BENEFITS OF USING A SPECIALIST ACCOUNTANT
4th December 2014
If you're thinking of setting up or buying a dental practice, retaining the services of an accountant is vital. Simon Freeman tells Dentistry magazine about the importance of using a specialist dental accountant... read more.
BILL CARR JOINS SNOWBIRD FINANCE
11th November 2014
Snowbird Finance announced today that Bill Carr is joining the business to further develop their practice finance offering to new and existing clients. Bill Carr comes with a wealth of experience within the healthcare sector, having spent 24 years working closely with Dentists, Doctors, Pharmacists and Veterinarians.
Bill started his career at the renowned NatWest St James' Dental Unit where he was one of the founding members of The Association of Service Providers for Dentists and Trustee of The Eastman Foundation for Oral Research and Training. Bill has helped numerous clients in Dentistry with financing for squats, practice purchases and repurchasing agreements.
Bill joins Snowbird on December 8th 2014 as Business Development Manager to continue Snowbird's growth and continued excellence in providing bespoke funding packages and practice finance to healthcare professionals around the UK looking to acquire practices. Bill comments "I am excited to start my new role at Snowbird and look forward to working with the team to further develop the specialised finance they provide. I am fortunate to be joining such a respected company that has an unrivalled reputation for top quality expertise, service and integrity."
Simon Freeman, Managing Director, added "Bill brings a wealth of experience and a deep understanding of practice finance and will be a key addition to the Snowbird team. We view his appointment as a sign of our commitment to being one of the leading providers of specialised finance to the healthcare sector. We are very fortunate that we were able to find someone of Bill's calibre to help us to build on the equipment finance and business and personal loan services we already offer and thus develop more opportunities for our clients to acquire practices."
About Bill Carr
Bill is a lecturer at UCL Eastman Dental Institute and also carries out lectures for the London Deanery, DFI Groups, BDA and the Whips Cross Hospital. He has lectured on practice purchasing with law and accountancy firms and specialist surveyors on GP Surgeries & Dentists.
Bill holds Chartered Institute of Bankers Scotland & IFS School of Finance qualifications in Healthcare Credit and is a Chartered Banker under the Business and Commercial Accreditation Program.
THE INCREASED NEED FOR LEASING MEDICAL EQUIPMENT
30th October 2014
The rapid pace of technological development in the medical equipment industry has led to an explosion of expensive medical devices - especially imaging devices.
A new study, Medical Equipment Rental Market - Global Industry Analysis, Size, Share, Growth, Trends and Forecast, 2013–2019 examines the opportunities for lessors in this growing marketplace.
The study recognises that the overall global healthcare industry is influenced by several factors such as increased life expectancy, the consistent rise in geriatric population, the escalating rise in national healthcare spending and the increased incidence of chronic disorders.
Also, it is witnessing the widened horizons of the private healthcare sector compared to the public healthcare sector.
All these factors are creating an increased need - and demand - for efficient medical equipment to facilitate effective diagnosis and treatments.
Furthermore, due to these factors, private and public healthcare organizations, and healthcare service providers, are under constant pressure to match the pace of medical technologies and be able to offer optimum treatment and care despite of budget constraints.
A high degree of obsolescence
Currently, the purchase of medical equipment loaded with novel technologies and features involves high costs and also, due to the rapid pace of technological development, suffers from a high degree of obsolescence in medical devices – resulting in the regular and costly need for upgrading.
As a result, together with uncertain global economic conditions, more and more medical equipment providers are offering medical equipment leasing or procuring the equipment on a rental basis.
The rationale behind this is that leasing or rental provides influential financial benefits as compared to traditional loans and credit purchases. Also, leasing is of benefit to those hospitals, laboratories, blood banks and others that are influenced by tight budgets.
Some of the most commonly leased medical devices are ultrasound, remote patient monitoring equipment, X-ray systems and other laboratory equipment.
Maintaining a balance
Some factors such as limited budget constraints of hospitals, nursing facilities, and commercial diagnostic laboratories, among others, provide lucrative scope for growth in this market. Leasing also enables healthcare service providers to maintain a balance between monthly payments with respect to monthly patient throughput rates and match this with strengthened business presence and optimized profits.
The major benefits of leasing medical equipment are tax advantages, cash conservation and also a protection to the business from obsolescence.
The capital budgets of many healthcare centers and hospitals have been greatly affected by the economic downturn and the ongoing uncertain economic environment. Owing to these factors, hospitals themselves are increasingly adopting operating lease agreements since these eliminate the waiting for the accumulation of enough capital budgets to acquire the medical equipment.
Also, hospital and healthcare service providers are increasingly interested in acquiring bundled products such as equipment, software and other services from a single source.
Europe promises to be a particularly lucrative market for medical equipment leasing owing to budget constraints faced by its hospitals and increasing incidences of chronic disorders in the region.
This research report analyzes this market depending on its market segments, major geographies, and current market trends.
MHRA WARNS OF COUNTERFEIT DENTAL EQUIPMENT
20th October 2014
The expression 'If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is' probably goes back 500 years or more, when the phrase 'Too good to be true' entered the English language.
So why was it necessary last week for the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) to warn dentists about the potential danger of buying and using counterfeit and unapproved dental equipment?
The MHRA is concerned about the growing range of dental equipment that is being advertised to dentists at cheap prices, both online and at dental trade fairs in China.
Its warning followed the seizure of over 12,000 different pieces of poor quality dental equipment imported into the UK from China and Pakistan and sold on auction websites such as eBay, Amazon and Alibaba in the past six months.
The items the MHRA has seized include:
Dental X-ray machines (24 seized) that emit high levels of radiation
Hand-piece drills (384 seized) that could malfunction and disintegrate inside patient's mouths
More than 3,240 poor quality root canal files that could break.
Dentists, especially those in the private sector, expect their patients to recognise quality and be prepared to pay for it.
We expect patients to come to someone qualified and registered to have their teeth whitened and not be seduced by a cheap beauty salon.
Yet when it comes to choosing a laboratory or a dental supplier, then price, not quality, is king.
That's business, I expect you say, and so it is.
After all, expenses have risen significantly in recent years, eating into practice profits.
But when it comes to buying dodgy equipment from unknown suppliers on the other side of the world, surely dentists have an obligation to put quality and safety above price.
As Alastair Jeffrey, the MHRA's head of enforcement, said: 'Dentists must source their dental equipment from reputable suppliers.
'Purchasing from auction websites and being unable to verify the integrity of the seller has the potential to increase risks to patients and cause reputational damage to the dental profession.'
SHOW STOPPING RATES FOR DENTAL EXHIBITION
6th October 2014
The BDIA Dental Showcase is almost upon us and Snowbird are delighted to announce that we are offering a fixed rate of 3.85% for new finance agreements during October. Get your funding pre-approved now and shop with confidence at the exhibition where you will find the UK's widest selection of products and services.
If you are thinking about purchasing new equipment, installing or upgrading IT systems or maybe refitting your premises, Snowbird can provide the flexible finance packages to suit your specific requirements.
Maximise your tax efficiency but taking advantage of the Annual Investment Allowance. Our rates are fixed for up to 7 years and finance is quick and easy to arrange.
Contact us now to find out more and discuss your funding requirements.
SNOWBIRD LAUNCHES NEW LOOK FOR BDIA DENTAL SHOWCASE
3rd October 2014
Having already established ourselves as a strong performer within the healthcare finance industry, Snowbird wants to continue to offer the same exceptional services through our online presence and social media. We are pleased to announce that you can now find us on twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+.
Our new website launch coincides with the start of the BDIA Dental Showcase on 9th -11th October - one of the most important events in the calendar of the dental industry. With the show offering the UK's widest selection of dental products and services, it attracts around 12,000 dental professionals and 350 exhibitors every year.
Having had great success at the show last year, Snowbird Finance signed up early to exhibit in 2014 and selected Quadrant2Design as their exhibition design and build partner. Marketing and Communications Manager at Snowbird Finance, Sophie-Louise Cook, said, "Quadrant2Design's Prestige system means we can integrate our improved branding concepts and vision into the stand; allowing us to effectively communicate our offering to visitors at the show."
Snowbird's developments coincide with a commitment to partner with more dental charities. For every agreement taken out with Snowbird Finance this year, we will donate £50 to Bridge2Aid, Burmadent, the BDA Benevolent Fund, or any other selected charity.
For more information about exhibiting with Quadrant2Design and the Prestige events system visit prestige-system.com.
SNOWBIRD ANNOUNCES NEW CHARITY PARTNERSHIPS
4th September 2014
Snowbird Finance are proud to have consistently supported worthy charitable causes over the last eight years, which has included a special partnership with Fight for Life at Great Ormond Street Hospital. Our desire is to try to donate as much as we can to support those who are less fortunate and this year we will be working with three charities to support both dentists in hardship in the UK, and the poor and disadvantaged in need of dentistry in Burma and East Africa.
Simon Freeman, Managing Director of Snowbird Finance said: "These fantastic charities were chosen by the staff at Snowbird as their values are close to our hearts. I hope these new and exciting partnerships will help raise a significant amount of money and awareness for these great causes."
The three charities we are proud to support with our £50 note campaign this year are Bridge2Aid, the BDA Benevolent Fund and Burmadent.
Bridge2Aid Operations Director, Shaenna Loughnane, thanked the team at Snowbird Finance, saying: "We are so grateful to Snowbird Finance for introducing this long-term initiative which has scope to raise a substantial amount of money for our training programmes in developing countries." Liz Rickarby, General Manager of the BDA Benevolent Fund commented, "We're always so appreciative when an organisation chooses to support our work, helping UK dentists and their families in times of need and we look forward to working with Simon and the team at Snowbird." Dr Mike Clarke, trustee of Burmadent added, "On behalf of Dr Henrik Overgaard-Nielson, Sharon Bierer and all the volunteers at Burmadent, we are delighted to have been chosen by Snowbird Finance and we hope this recognition of our worthy cause will help to help to raise more funds to help volunteers to provide dental care for the poor and disadvantaged in Burma."
Snowbird Finance will offer all dental clients the opportunity to earn £50 in cash for placing their next transaction with us, and we will offer to match it by donating another £50 to Bridge2Aid, the BDA Benevolent Fund, Burmadent or a charity of their choice.