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SmileDirectClub invests in Nashville as city continues to grow

Posted at 4:18 PM, Mar 28, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-28 17:25:26-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — SmileDirectClub, an invisible braces company, has pledged to add more than 2,000 jobs to their Nashville operations by 2025, which already boast about 2,000 employees.

The company was founded 5 years ago, and in that time, has exploded into one of the largest invisible braces companies in the country.

The company was founded by Alex Fenkell and his childhood friend who saw a gap in the invisible braces industry, knowing how expensive it can be, and knowing how uncomfortable and inconvenient metal braces can be.

“We both had a full metal wire mouth of braces when we were about 13 years old,” Fenkell said of himself and his co-founder Jordan Katzman. “We figured, if we could bring an affordable invisible liner product done from the convenience of the home, there’s a real opportunity to help people.”

The service works by having customers go to one of SmileDirectClub’s 225 SmileShops for a 3D scan of their smile. It’s then reviewed by an orthodontist, then you’re sent invisible aligners that you will wear over about a 6-month period that will get your teeth into alignment. Once that’s complete, you’re sent a retainer that you wear every night to keep your teeth where they’re supposed to be.

“This is more than just a teeth straightening service, you know, we’re bringing people a smile that they love and care about and it’s a whole new sense of confidence that really empowers every aspect of their lives,” Fenkell said, adding that they aim to do that at a price that more people can afford than ever before. “We’ve really been able to democratize orthodontics by bringing people a smile for 60% less the price of traditional braces.”

The success of the company was put on display when they announced, with Governor Bill Lee at their side, that the company was planning to add more than 2,000 jobs to their Nashville operation by the year 2025, adding to the already bustling economy that will soon get 5,000 Amazon jobs added to the economy, as well as other businesses and jobs.

“This city is just vibrant and has just a fast-growing pace that we love being a part of. It’s been very welcoming, and it’s really lent itself to attract top-tier, diverse talent,” Fenkell explained. “I think that aligns with our brand mission of what we’re doing at SmileDirectClub.”

In the more short-term, SmileDirectClub plans to increase the number of their SmileShops from 225 to more than 500 across North America by the end of 2019.