EveryDay Contacts Sets Plan to Support ECPs and Launch D2C Alternative Model

By

Lawrence Chavez.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.—EveryDay Contacts, a startup company established in a collaborative effort with optometrists, is preparing to launch a new daily disposable contact lens, as well as a new business model for ECPs who want to offer patients an alternative to the emerging direct-to-consumer (D2C) CL subscription companies. EveryDay Contacts is working toward bringing to market what it believes is an “affordable and premium, daily disposable, silicone hydrogel lens” in the third quarter of 2019, founder and chief executive officer Lawrence Chavez told VMAIL in an interview. One of the concepts behind the launch of the new company – which was incorporated in May – is that the current D2C model has been established around the “disingenuous” perception that all contact lenses are created equally, he explained.

“We want to come to the market with a model that looks at patient health first,” he said. The EveryDay Contacts model also brings its new lens to patients in a way that reduces clinic administrative burden while profits, according to the company’s website.

In creating a business plan, the company sought to combine the care and expertise of the ECP with the convenience and confidence that some patients perceive to be the key benefit of the D2C online sales model that companies such as Hubble and other startups. Chavez noted that EveryDay Contacts has “a unique model that allows us to create a D2C platform” while still tying it back to the eyecare professional.

The new company is working with several leading ODs, who are serving in an advisory capacity. They are: Alan Glazier, OD; Barry Eiden, OD; Susan Resnick, OD; Melissa Barnett, OD, and Tom Arnold, OD. “With the help of our advisors, we’ve developed a business model that enables direct-to-consumer style marketing and convenience while encouraging and facilitating a doctor/patient relationship that doesn’t cut corners when it comes to care,” the company notes on its website.

Dr. Glazier told VMAIL that he had been focused on finding ways to “disrupt the disruptors in the contact lens space who were trying to sell boxed contacts without involving doctor care” when he was approached by Chavez about being an advisor to the new company about six months ago.

“I challenged Mr. Chavez to test his commitment to keeping the eye doctor as part of the prescribing process, asked him to commit to this in writing as well as commit to promising the company would never support a generic contact lens as substitution for a doctors’ Rx and received such a promise,” Glazier said. “Patients like the convenience of online ordering, but it is not in the best interest of the health of the public to dispense medical devices without proper care and follow up by eye care professionals. EverydayContacts’ model keeps the doctor in the picture and they have committed to running a business that is best interest of the health of our patients,” he added.

The new lens technology is licensed from Lotus Leaf Coatings,  an advanced materials company based in Albuquerque and which began working in the area of contact lens coating materials more than 2½ years ago. (Chavez, who has more than 25 years of finance, operations management and strategic marketing experience in a variety of entrepreneurial businesses, is the chief executive of Lotus Leaf Coatings, also.)

Chavez told VMAIL EveryDay Contacts is preparing to initiate a clinical trial for its new lens, which is required as part of the process to secure 510K approval from the Food and Drug Administration. “As we surveyed the landscape on the best way to bring our patent pending technology to market, we realized that we had to put the contact lens wearer's eye health first and build our business model around that premise,” the company noted.

The company’s patent-pending coating technology is applied during the manufacturing process, and it “covers the exposed silicone to protect the bare eye. Aside from protection, this coating gives the contact increased wettability while the wearer also gets the benefit of the silicone hydrogel’s increased breathability,” according to EveryDay Contacts’ website.

As part of its business model, EveryDay Contacts said it intends to partner with eyecare clinics in a way that allows ODs to provide “premium daily disposable contact lenses at transparent and consistent prices for consumers both in-office and online.” Chavez noted that many consumers today routinely “price shop in real time” and that EveryDay Contacts’ consistent and transparent pricing strategy will enable ODs to counter the price-shopping consumer mindset.

In addition, the company noted that “many people are buying contact lenses online based on price only,” without regard to their eye health, and as a result, often “the critical role of the OD in the patient care is being bypassed.”

“Our model ensures that the doctor/patient relationship is at the forefront of everything we do,” the company noted. “Every delivery will be from you, the provider, care of EveryDay Contacts. And each delivery will have continuing education on eyecare and our platform will facilitate better two way communication to maximize the relationship you have with your patient.”