Panacea touts $24M

in new investments

Panacea Financial of Little Rock announced Tuesday that it has raised $24.5 million in new investments to fund its strategic growth and enhance product and technology offerings for doctors.

Valar Ventures, a global venture capital fund based in New York City, was the sole institutional investor in the funding round.

Panacea said the Series B financing will enable the company to expand its team of technology, financial services and health care experts by providing doctors with a comprehensive and integrated financial platform.

"Our goal is to build a widely diversified and deeply integrated suite of financial products and services for doctors, their practices and ultimately the broader health care industry," said Tyler Stafford, chief executive officer and co-founder of Panacea Financial.

Panacea has more than doubled revenue in the past year and provided more than 450 million in financing to doctors and their practices, according to the company.

-- Andrew Moreau

Dental group is set

for state expansion

Rock Dental Brands of Little Rock is expanding affiliations by adding practices in Arkansas, Florida, Missouri and Tennessee. The Arkansas expansion includes Arkansas Oral and Facial Surgery Center of Northwest Arkansas.

"We believe that the integration of these four excellent and regionally recognized dental providers into the Rock Dental Brands network will create exciting opportunities for growth and collaboration," said Kristi Casey, chief executive officer of the company.

Rock Dental Brands is a dentist-owned practice management group that operates 108 dental offices in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Missouri and Tennessee.

Arkansas Oral and Facial Surgery Center was founded in Springdale in 1994 and has expanded to include clinics across Northwest Arkansas.

-- Andrew Moreau

State's index slips,

ends day at 909.10

The Arkansas Index, a price-weighted index that tracks the largest public companies based in the state, closed Tuesday at 909.10, down 3.31 points.

"U.S. stocks fell on Tuesday as investors continue to focus on the path of interest rates with a tepid start to earnings season led by big banks," said Chris Harkins, managing director at Raymond James & Associates.

Three members of the Arkansas Index gained in trading Tuesday while 10 declined. Uniti Group, Inc. closed at $5.79 up 8 cents or 1.4% to see the largest percentage gain in trading Tuesday on the index. Murphy Oil Corp. closed at $38.16, down 92 cents or 2.35%, the largest percentage decline on the index for the day.

The index was developed by Bloomberg News and the Democrat-Gazette with a base value of 100 as of Dec. 30, 1997.

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