Essilor Announces Partnerships With Two Dispensing Service Providers

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CHARENTON-LE-PONT, France—Essilor announced today that it has formed partnerships with two U.S. companies that provide dispensing services to eyecare professionals in the U.S., Partners In Vision (PIV) and Vision Associates.

Essilor executives declined to offer financial details. However, neither Partners in Vision or Vision Associates was among the companies Essilor acquired in the first half of 2017, according to Essilor’s financial results released today.

“We’ve entered into these partnerships because our customers have asked for help in optimizing their dispensaries while capturing more customers at the point of sale,” Eric Leonard, president of Essilor of America, told VMail. “Partners in Vision and Vision Associates have an expertise that didn’t exist within Essilor.

“We also see this as a way to explore and understand the interaction between the consumer and dispenser, and create a deeper connection through technology, innovation and communication,” Leonard said. “The partnership will help deliver value and differentiated results for our customers looking to enhance the dispenser and patient communication and making buying glasses easier in the optical.”

Partners in Vision operates leased optical departments, primarily in ophthalmology practices. The company, headquartered in Edison, N.J. was ranked 22nd in Vision Monday’s 2017 Top 50 Retail report. According to the VM report, Partners in Vision generated sales of $46.6 million in 2016 and operates 118 dispensaries. The company was founded in 1999 by Judd Sky, LDO, FNAO, who remains CEO.

According to Partners in Vision’s website, the company “enjoys a unique partnership” with Essilor of America that is designed to boost “cooperation and efficiency.” The site said the two companies have synchronized their software systems to “enable automatic direct transmission of work tickets directly into the lens processing system. This significantly accelerates the production process and eliminates transcription and data entry errors and allows for online job status checking, direct optician/lab communication and messaging, as well as immediate notification of lens availability.”

PIV refers to Essilor as its “preferred lens provider,” and PIV and Essilor have collaborated on the creation of custom, high quality digital progressive lenses which are exclusive to PIV practices, PIV said.

Vision Associates offers optical dispensary management and consulting services for eyecare practices. The company operates a facility in Warren, N.J. that houses its corporate headquarters, a laboratory, executive offices and frames inventory department. Essilor Labs of America acquired the lab in 2002. The lab was recently expanded and upgraded, according to the company’s website.