Advanced Digital Eyewear Launches Co-Branded Site With Blue Shield of California

SAN FRANCISCO—Advanced Digital Eyewear Inc., Blue Shield of California’s exclusive online eyewear company, certified by the California Medical Board, has officially launched its website,

“Our objective is to provide affordably-priced state-of-the–art eyewear directly to members of vision care insurance plans and to all consumers through websites that are co-branded with managed care, public and private corporations,” said Bernard Freiwald, CEO of Advanced Digital Eyewear Inc. is the only in-network online eyewear retailer for Blue Shield of California, which allows many Blue Shield of California Vision Care members to use their existing benefits to purchase eyewear at no additional out-of-pocket cost. Some members may be required to pay a small co-pay if their vision care plan has one, a statement said.

Advanced Digital Eyewear was developed by optical industry veterans Freiwald and Leslie Gardner, each of whom have more than 20 years of experience in the industry, including more than a decade of leading the worldwide development of Sola International, now a part of Carl Zeiss Vision.

“Online sales of eyewear are currently about 3 percent of the total U.S. eyewear market,” said Gardner, president of Advanced Digital Eyewear. “According to Forrester Research, that figure is expected to grow to 10 percent to 15 percent by 2016. The opportunity is wide open, and the support of Blue Shield of California and our use of top quality, state-of–the-art lens designs, contemporary frames and processing technologies give us a unique position in the market.”

“Our proprietary Real-Time Benefit Technology enables vision care members to access and apply their benefits throughout the website,” Gardner added. offers step-by-step guidance to make selection and purchase. Customers can upload a photo of themselves to virtually “try on” any frame selection and share their frame choices with friends and family through Facebook and Twitter. A team professional team of trained opticians and fashion experts is available online or by phone to also help customers.

Advanced Digital Eyewear expects to partner with companies who offer financial, human and technological resources (such as in-store kiosks), as well as the strategic commitment to bring affordable eyewear to people worldwide, Gardner added.