Profiles, Stories

Work Hard, Get Lucky: Dr. Steve Mark Gan’s Journey from Ordinary Man to Extraordinary CEO

On our CHiNOY Profiles segment with Dr. Steve Mark Gan, one word of advice he wanted to give was this: “Hard work will make you lucky.”


True enough to his own advice, Dr. Gan worked hard to achieve what Gan Advanced Osseointegration Center (GAOC) is today. The clinic now has 10 premium branches across the metro and are trusted among today’s top celebrities like Kim Chiu and Boy Abunda.



Ordinary beginnings 


In 1998, Dr. Gan went back to the Philippines from the States. At the time he started a humble practice in Binondo with only Php 3,000 in his savings and a 3rd hand dental chair. He’d charge 1,000 for a cleaning even though most dentists charged 300-500. When his patients never came back, he learned the importance of setting right prices.


While his practice in Binondo was doing well, he still dreamed of opening a practice in Makati.


Eventually, in 1999,  he got the opportunity to join St. Luke’s Medical Centre and set-up another practice with a prominent doctor but in the end both decided to close the practice and remain friends. From that experience though, Dr. Gan conceptualized what would now be GAOC.

Rough inbetweens


When Dr. Gan opened the first GAOC in 2001 his dream was to normalize going to the dentist, and to promote good oral health.


At the time, attaining his goal was a challenge especially since GAOC started operating while over budget. When they started, the had 3 high end chairs, and top equipment and amenities but didn’t have the proper returns to gain profit. This put his company under a lot of pressure.


Another salt to the wound was the fact that, as young doctor, Dr. Gan was a big spender. He went out with a lot of movie stars, partied every night, and bought expensive cars.


This experience taught him a lot about the value of money and would help him as he grew GAOC over the years.

An extraordinary growth

According to Dr. Gan, his big break came in the form of one confident host–Boy Abunda. After Boy Abunda had a try at their clinic, word of mouth ensued and soon afterwards other celebrities came to their clinics.


Today, GAOC not only stands strong with 10 branches, but Dr. Gan has also extended his ventures into expansions like the Novodental clinics, Samurai Dental Laboratory and the Gan Tech Industries.


On top of these are his social efforts. Knowing that not many may afford his services, Dr. Gan conducts monthly medical missions, and shoulders the cost for a handful of surgeries and procedures. He also set-up the GAOC Foundation where they raise funds to facilitate educational scholarships for employees and staff, and the GAOC Dental Academy where he gives students a chance to learn from professionals around the globe.



From his ordinary beginnings in Binondo to his extraordinary growth in dentistry, Dr. Gan has developed positive change in local dentistry, and has set-up a world-class local brand which will undoubtedly stay for years to come.


Learn more about this distinguished dentist on his extended CHiNOY Profiles. Watch it on!

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