BLOOMINGTON, Ill.—Amid a challenging year for many businesses and health care providers in 2020, Keplr Vision said it finished the year with an impressive 40 new eyecare partnerships. With 65 practice locations added via those partnerships, the Keplr organization “now boasts 185 total clinical locations,” the group said in an announcement late last week. Keplr Vision said it primarily focused its expansion in the Midwest while taking stronger steps into Texas and the Pacific Northwest regions in 2020.

Keplr Vision was formed in July 2019 when two portfolio companies of Imperial Capital of Canada—Total ECP and Visionary Eye Partners—merged to operate as a combined entity under the Keplr name.

“We partner with the best private practices,” Keplr Vision chief executive officer Nick Williams said. “This gave us a jump start in 2020 and allowed us to emerge from COVID-19 closures and restrictions with the ability to quickly rebound and continue growth.”

Keplr Vision chief growth officer Claude Labeeuw told VMAIL that Keplr had established relationships with many practices across the country prior to the coronavirus pandemic interrupting daily life for most businesses and individuals last spring. For this reason, it was possible to reactivate discussions with these practices once operating performance and business returned to more normal levels, he added.

In 2020, Keplr Vision had several notable partners join its ranks, including Dr. David Cockrell, Dr. David Heitmeier, Dr. Jeff Kegarise, Dr. Heidi Pham-Murphy, Dr. Summy To, Dr. Russel Beach and Dr. David Wolf, according to the announcement.

In July, Keplr Vision announced Dr. Cockrell as the head of Keplr Advocacy, which was created to “address regulations that hinder the practice of the full-scope of optometry and other policy issues,” according to Keplr Vision’s announcement.

In the fourth quarter alone, Keplr Vision added 23 new locations across 14 partnerships. To add to their portfolio in Texas, Keplr Vision joined with some notable practices, including Dr. Moes Nasser’s three Vision Centers of Houston clinics, and joining Dr. Keith Manuel’s Space Center Eye Associates, NASA’s primary provider of optometric services.

“Understanding that my practices and doctors were joining a medically focused optometric group made my decision to join Keplr Vision an easy one,” Dr. Nasser said. Along with his broad clinical reputation, Nasser is a well-known advocate for Optometry Giving Sight and about to have three charity clinics in his hometown area of Tanzania, where he was born.

Dr. David Rosenblum of Eyesite Optometry and OC Eyecare Optometry in Southern California also partnered with Keplr in 2020.

“These guys are operators. I’m happy to have them run the front of the house while I can focus more heavily on the patient side,” Dr. Rosenblum said.

Keplr Vision also continued its expansion near its home base by partnering with Dr. Scott Pouyat in suburban Chicago. Dr. Pouyat and his associate doctors focus heavily on co-management and the health of the eye.

“For my practice, there was no other partner than Keplr Vision,” Dr. Pouyat stated. “Our partnership has helped to streamline our day-to-day processes in the office, allowing the doctors and staff to spend more time with our patients.” His three offices are in Lake Zurich, Grayslake, and Antioch.

“Even in 2020, it was a busy year,” Labeeuw said. “We continue to exceed even our own expectations, and we look forward to continuing to gain ground by only partnering with the best private optometry practices in the country.”

At the close of 2020, Keplr Vision partnerships operated across 30 states and counted more than 300 ODs within the organization. Keplr Vision works to bring together private practice optometrists who focus on pushing the practice of optometry forward, according to the company’s announcement.

Through a collaborative partnership, Keplr Vision offers OD partners a robust business support services and supply chain management, allowing doctors to focus on their practice and their patients while retaining their legacy. For more information about partnering with Keplr Vision, contact Labeeuw at (415) 381-5845.