Preparing for a Retail Reset

By Marge Axelrad and Mark Tosh
Thursday, May 21, 2020 12:30 AM How does a leader prepare for a never-known-before challenge? Pause. Breathe. Rely on colleagues. Get the real facts. Make a plan. Be prepared to change it. Do the right thing for your team, your employees, your company, your patients. As we examine the 2019 year past, VM asked a few of our Top 2020 U.S. Optical Retailer executive leaders about the pandemic and what it could mean for the future. 
- The Editors

2019’s Consolidation Impacted in Mid to Upper Tier, Growth of Value Sector

By Marge Axelrad and Mark Tosh
Monday, May 18, 2020 12:29 AM NEW YORK— Calendar sales of optical services and products at retail were healthy. In a market that grew to nearly $37.5 billion in the U.S., according to The Vision Council’s VisionWatch tracking, sales grew at a nice pace over the prior year, for all ECPs, regional and national companies. Business was solid, for companies large and small.

VM's Top 50 Sales Concentration Grows

By Marge Axelrad and Mark Tosh
Monday, May 18, 2020 12:28 AM NEW YORK—Comparable to prior VM Top 50 reports, there was a concentration of sales among the 2020 VM Top 50 U.S. Optical Retailers, accounting for an estimated $15.7 billion of a $37.5 billion total U.S. market for the 12 months ending Dec. 2019. The Top 10 optical retailers collectively comprise 85.4 percent of the Top 50’s collective U.S. optical retail sales, meaning that retail groups ranked numbers 11 through 50 comprise just under 15 percent of that remaining Top 50 group.

Stacking Up the Top 50 Optical Retailers

By Marge Axelrad and Mark Tosh
Monday, May 13, 2019 12:30 AM NEW YORK—New attitudes among consumers toward purchasing in general and the rise of digital exploration and purchasing may have upended the general retail marketplace last year with many store closures and reorgs. But as the U.S. economy held its own, the optical industry’s total sales rose just slightly and remained stable.

VM’s Ranking Underscores Expansion Among the 10 Leading Players

By Marge Axelrad and Mark Tosh
Monday, May 13, 2019 12:29 AM NEW YORK—New attitudes among consumers toward purchasing in general and the rise of digital exploration and purchasing may have upended the general retail marketplace last year with many store closures and reorgs. But as the U.S. economy held its own, the optical industry’s total sales rose just slightly and remained stable.

VM’s Top 50 Sales Concentration Grows

By Marge Axelrad and Mark Tosh
Monday, May 13, 2019 12:28 AM NEW YORK—There was a higher concentration of sales among the 2019 VM Top 50 U.S. Optical Retailers, which assesses estimates of 12 months of calendar sales for the year ending Dec. 2018. The Top 10 optical retailers collectively comprise 87.5 percent of the Top 50 U.S. optical retail sales. That equated to a collective-estimated $12.6 billion out of the market’s total optical retail sales of $35.7 billion, as reported by VisionWatch/The Vision Council.

Looking at the Practice Ownership Model

By Marge Axelrad and Mark Tosh
Monday, August 13, 2018 12:30 AM NEW YORK – Having the wherewithal to successfully compete as an eyecare professional and a business person can be a daunting challenge, particularly for independents.

Vision Source

By Marge Axelrad and Mark Tosh
Monday, August 13, 2018 12:29 AM KINGWOOD, Texas—Perhaps lost in the initial response to Vision Source’s launch of its Vision Source Next program was just how broad and comprehensive the program intends to be, and how it has a range of offerings for optometrist practitioners across all stages of their career.

Rev360

By Marge Axelrad and Mark Tosh
Monday, August 13, 2018 12:28 AM MADISON, Wis.—Five months into the launch of a new practice ownership structure for independent eyecare professionals, Rev360 executives are pleased with the response the new RevAdvance “partnership model” has received and the operational progress the initial OD practices in the program have experienced.

Associates in Eyecare

By Marge Axelrad and Mark Tosh
Monday, August 13, 2018 12:27 AM ASHBURN, Va. – Growing organically and with well-chosen local partners, Associates in Eyecare (AIE), a business group of optometrists in the D.C./Northern Virginia area, has been carefully building its presence, augmenting its doctors’ talents and equity stakes with professional operations managers in an approach that has enabled the group to grow to 10 practices today.

Pearle Vision

By Marge Axelrad and Mark Tosh
Monday, August 13, 2018 12:26 AM For independent optometrists who own their practice, Pearle Vision recently added a new option for these ECPs to consider as they plan for future growth and success. In June, at the American Optometric Association event in Denver, Pearle officially launched the “Pearle Vision Ignite” program as a “strategic independent optometrist conversion program.”

Vision One Credit Union

By Marge Axelrad and Mark Tosh
Monday, August 13, 2018 12:25 AM SACRAMENTO, Calif.—With interest by firms outside the traditional vision care market on the rise, these are interesting, and challenging, times for independent eyecare practices. Indeed, private equity firms looking for prospective new investments, and even corporate-operated eyecare groups, are looking at optometry as a market ready for growth and consolidation.

Private Equity Takes Root in Optical

By Marge Axelrad and Mark Tosh
Friday, November 17, 2017 12:30 AM NEW YORK—Investors are really, really interested in the vision care space. There have been almost 20 separate new private equity deals within the past 24 months alone, plus an additional series of deals which expand on prior ones, with more on the horizon. Directly, and by association, they are amping up the competitive stakes of virtually all eyecare and eyewear players and are setting the stage for a new posture for the industry to both consumers and patients.