Exhibition and Education News, May - June 2015
IACLE World Congress hails technology as future for contact lens education
SILMO, ISTANBUL, "On the Banks of the Bosporus"
Vision UK 2015 Calls for Continued Collaboration
Make a point in trying out EasyScan at Independents Day
Browning to lecture on Free Independents Day Sunday
Eye Health and Sight Loss organisations come together
1st World Congree of Optometry programme
Bookings open for Colleges First Pre Reg conference
DOCET launches new distance learning module
Third Optometry Tomorrow Bitesize to be held in Manchester
Consultant ophthalmologist to discuss cranial nerve disease at College Event
Booking opens for AOP autumn CET and events programme
SILMO 2015 for that special trip to Paris this September
Optrafair confirms numbers for this year's show
Eyespace, winner of 'Optical Supplier of the Year 2015' is booked for 100% Optical 2016
ABDO to play bigger role at 100% Optical in 2016
IACLE World Congress hails technology as future for contact lens education
Providing large numbers of students with clinical experience of contact lenses is among the challenges faced by contact lens educators around the world that could be met by more use of technology in teaching.
That’s the verdict of speakers at the Third IACLE World Congress where educators from 30 countries came together to share their experiences and learn about the role of classroom technology in shaping the future of contact lens education.
A total of 107 delegates took part in the World Congress, hosted by The University of Manchester, UK from 24th to 28th May 2015. Educators came from all three of IACLE’s global regions: Asia Pacific, Europe / Africa – Middle East and Americas. The Association of Optometric Contact Lens Educators and British Universities Committee of Contact Lens Educators were also represented.
Senior industry figures from Congress Sponsors Alcon, CooperVision and Johnson & Johnson Vision Care played an active part and collaborated on a special business session examining the role of educators in growing global contact lens penetration. IACLE members around the world were able to participate via a live online broadcast throughout the four days.
Technologies discussed included virtual and augmented reality devices that could create authentic learning opportunities using computer simulations. In the US, the University of Houston is already using Simulation Lab to demonstrate refractive techniques to students, and in schools in China a virtual fitting centre is among the technology now in use.
In teaching, the iPad could be used to ‘flip’ the classroom, transform the learning space and create ePub content with rich media and interactive features. Learning management systems such as Blackboard, collaboration tool Nearpod and apps Explain Everything and Showbie were among those demonstrated.
Following the Congress, delegates were asked: ‘Will you make any changes to the way you teach contact lenses at your institution following your participation in Third IACLE World Congress?’ All delegates responding said they would.
The most common changes would be to introduce multimedia presentations, interactive lectures and pre-recorded sessions to their teaching. Others said they would use technology for knowledge assessment. Moving to paperless education and introducing evidence-based practice earlier in the curriculum were other planned changes.
IACLE President Dr Shehzad Naroo said the Congress could transform the future for contact lens education around the world. ‘The choice of topics at the World Congress reflected education tools that will enhance the CL teaching experience for students around the world now, tomorrow and in the future.’
Rolando Rojas of the Universidad Peruana de Los Andes in Lima, Perú commented: ‘The Congress marked a turning point in my thinking about education. I have learnt that the main role of an educator is to facilitate learning and we must be able to use all the educational tools available. I am working on tailoring a course to be delivered through Nearpod and measuring the impact on students.’
Henri Eek, who teaches at Deltion College and Hogeschool Utrecht in The Netherlands, said: ‘The Congress made me think about considering the increased use of tablets or computers in our schools. We’re only at the beginning when we consider innovation within education. The future will be inspiring and beautiful I think!’
Dr Rajeswari Mahadevan, Assistant Professor at the Elite School of Optometry in Chennai, India said the congress as excellent: ‘All the technology that we can use – I never knew so much existed for teaching purposes.’
Craig Woods, Assistant Professor of Optometry at a new school at Deakin University in Australia, added: ‘The meeting exceeded my expectations. I was thrilled with the personal learning outcomes I obtained.’
SILMO, ISTANBUL, "ON THE BANKS OF THE BOSPORUS"June 2105
On 22 May, the teams from SILMO International and SILMO Istanbul launched the new
edition of SILMO ISTANBUL in the stunning setting of the Suada Club, located on a small
island on the Bosporus, upstream from the old centre of Istanbul.
250 French and Turkish public figures gave a positive reception to the new aims of
this trade fair set to take place on 10-13 December 2015, following on from the 2014
fair, which proved to be as successful as expected: 13,000m2 of exhibition space, 95
exhibitors (88 from Turkey and seven from abroad) and 420 brands represented.
As both a local and international trade fair, SILMO ISTANBUL is endeavouring
to be the number one trade fair in Turkey, a country in which the optics and
eyewear market is highly dynamic with average annual growth of 10%, as
well as being a meeting place for the industry in neighbouring countries. The
7,304 visitors in 2014 (up 8.5% on 2013) were mostly from Turkey: 6,967 were
from the country and 330 were from abroad.
The stated ambition of the next edition is to make the optics and eyewear trade fair
into the must-visit event for the Balkans Region, Central Asia, Near and Middle East
and North Africa.
SILMO Istanbul 2015’s goal is therefore to greatly increase visitor numbers from all of
these countries, drawing on the expertise of SILMO Paris, with the Istanbul edition
incorporating the Paris brand image, content and values, combining them with the
expertise of the Turkish organizers.
SILMO ISTANBUL is a reflection of Turkish optics and eyewear industry stakeholders’ desire
to create a leading event to promote the sector throughout the region and develop the
optics and eyewear business.
The Silmo Association and Comexposium have equal stakes in Silmo International.
The Silmo Association brings together French optics and eyewear industry manufacturers
and was founded in 1967. It is the owner of the Silmo Paris trade fair and its longstanding organizer. Comexposium is one of Europe’s leading event organizers with 114 B-2-C and
B-2-B events in 17 business sectors.
Vision UK 2015 Calls for Continued Collaboration to Influence Decision Makers in Eye Health and Sight Loss Services
The seventh annual Vision UK conference took place on 18 June 2015 at Central Hall Westminster, London. Titled ‘Working Together to Deliver the UK Vision Strategy’, it was the largest Vision UK conference to date and welcomed more than 550 attendees.
The opening session included an inspiring keynote address from Lord Holmes of Richmond MBE, who highlighted the importance of collaboration, stating that we must continue to work together to make the UK Vision Strategy a reality.
Through a new format of five conference streams focused on delivering aspects of the UK Vision Strategy, the conference shared best practice and highlighted the great work that has been happening across the UK.
Vision UK 2015 was also delighted to be supported by Justin Tomlinson MP, Minister for Disabled People. Justin Tomlinson MP said:
“Almost two million people in the UK live with sight loss and Vision UK 2015 is vital in bringing together the various groups and organisations that work on their behalf. The Royal National Institute of Blind People can be proud of supporting such a worthwhile and well-attended
UK Vision Strategy also created a fully accessible conference experience for all attendees with the first Vision UK smartphone application. Delegates could access the programme, vote in the poster competition and network with other attendees through the app which was available in IOS, Android and Web formats.
Devon were declared Poster Winners on the day and you can download their poster here titled "Promoting Eye Care Priority in Devon"
The day concluded with the People’s Panel, which was made up of speakers who are blind or partially sighted from each of the five conference streams.
Chaired by Vidar Hjardeng, Diversity Consultant for ITV News, the panel shared their pledges from the event which included continued emphasis on the importance of accessible technology, hearing what service users have to say and collaborating to influence decision makers.
Grafton prepare for Independents Day with Easyscan
Grafton intend to highlight their latest EasyScan a camera like no other in the marketplace, it provides for greater detail in retinal photography even through moderate cataracts and through pupils as small as 1.5 mm, using the latest SLO technology.
SLO stands for Scanning Laser Ophthalmoscope technology which gives superior imaging far better in contrast to a fundus camera. Retinopathies are far easier to detect with a sharper image allowing for earlier detection and diagnosis.
No need therefore for time consuming pupil dilation reducing chair time and providing a more comfortable experience for the patient.
The EasyScan is positioned within the range of equipment that the modern diagnostic optometrist needs to provide early identification of anomalies that will be readily received by the ophthalmologist.
As a diagnostic tool an SLO fundus camera provides the right level of information early on and more efficiently than an OCT. It’s a real practice maker and not a practice breaker financially.
Browning to share view’s on GOS at FREE Sunday symposium
Proven Track Record (PTR) has revealed some details about this year’s Sunday Free-for-All mini-symposium and the precursor to this year’s 10th Anniversary Independents Day (i-Day) on Sunday 6th July.
One of the highlights of the meeting will be Simon Browning speaking on ‘Beyond GOS…’ where he will share his views on the future of UK optometry following the end of General Ophthalmic Services. Following his address there will be a panel and audience discussion session.
At the time of press PTR was able to confirm ABDO President Peter Black, AIO Chairman Peter Warren and GOS Reform activist Ian White, as part of the panel.
The company also announced that as well as being free to attend for all those working in the independent sector, this year they are opening the doors to those in the multiple sector who are thinking about setting up on their own at some point in the future.
Those wishing to attend simply need to register at www.independentsday.co.uk/event/sunday-free-for-all
PTR Director Nick added, “I’m delighted that Simon has agreed to shares his views on life after GOS, expanding upon his recent so-called ‘white paper’. It’s sure to be thought provoking, neigh controversial and encourage much discussion amongst delegates. This is important, as the future business model of optometry is likely to be very different and independents need to be thinking about and preparing for, an alternative future”.
This year see’s the return of an alternative track for non-business owners and will be run by experienced optical trainer, Lindsey Small. Sponsored by HOYA, the track entitled, Is being good, good enough? Improving patient perceptions through effective communication, comprises of 3-module’s covering First impressions count (initial patient contact), Boosting communication with technology (enhanced dispensing) and Creating a lasting impression (collection appointment). It is suitable for all the practice support team including optical assistants and each module will be worth 1 CET point for professional staff.
As always there is plenty of company sponsored CET including 3 CET point sponsor sessions:
• SD-OCT in the early detection of Glaucoma - Heidelberg Engineering peer discussion session (Breakfast Monday morning)
• Transitions photochromic mini-lab - Essilor workshop
• Contact lens peer review: Presbyopia - Johnson & Johnson peer discussion session
Nick Atkins commented, “Whilst iDay is all about business David and I do appreciate that it’s always nice to pick up a point or two whilst taking valuable time out. As such we are delighted there are so many CET options available to our delegates. Business and CET – we’d call that a win-win!”
iDay ‘weekend’ is 5-6th July at the HILTON Birmingham Metropole. For more information and to book visit www.independentsday.co.uk.
Leading eye health and sight loss organisations in England come together to launch new action plan
The leading eye health and sight loss organisations in England have come together to launch a new action plan called the England Vision Strategy. The action plan is based on six key priorities including: improving eye health for all; improving treatments and support for people losing their sight; and increasing participation and inclusion for people with sight loss.
The England Vision Strategy is part of the UK Vision Strategy, a cross-sector initiative, uniting all those who want to take action on issues relating to eye health and sight loss. The England Vision Strategy will be promoted and driven forward by an Executive Group consisting of the leading eye health and sight loss experts across England. The action plan will aim to deliver the UK Vision Strategy outcomes in England.
Statistics indicate that over 1.5 million people are living with sight loss in England and that this figure is set to double by 2050. However fifty percent of sight loss could be avoided.
Peter Corbett, co-chair England Vision Strategy and Chief Executive, Thomas Pocklington Trust said, “I am delighted that we have this opportunity to make a real difference for people with sight loss. Far too often we hear of people across England experiencing a postcode lottery for services or falling through the gaps in current systems resulting in social isolation, lose of independence and far worse. The England Vision Strategy will work to combat these failings, working in partnership with providers and the public to achieve great things.”
John Thompson, co-chair England Vision Strategy commented, “Across the sector we have a wealth of knowledge and experience to draw upon. The England Vision Strategy provides us with a solid framework on which to build, using the strengths of our colleagues to prevent people losing their sight unnecessarily, to provide support to those who need it and to effect lasting change for the better.”
1st World Congress of Optometry – programme confirmed
The programme for the 1st World Congress of Optometry has now been confirmed and will be delivered by more than 45 leading speakers from around the world.
The Congress, which takes place 14 -16 August in Medellin, Colombia comprises lectures, two symposia, three seminars and more than ten workshops, delivered in Spanish and English. It will cover 17 thematic areas of interest to optometrists and eye health professionals including therapeutics, refractive surgery, glaucoma and systemic diseases, with keynote lectures on myopia and diabetes.
There will also be presentations of selected scientific and education papers, offering valuable insights into current research and clinical practice, as well as a poster and clinical photography exhibit.
The programme will offer at least 25 hours of COPE accredited lectures and 30 CET points.
The World Council of Optometry (WCO) will be holding a Presidential Forum on 13 August, which will focus on optometry-led global strategies for quality eye healthcare. The Second Latin American Association of Optometry and Optics (ALDOO) meeting of deans and heads of schools of optometry will convene on 15th August and the Second Latin American Convention of Associations of Optometry will convene on 16th August at the venue.
The three day itinerary comprises two parallel programmes: a scientific programme with lectures and workshops on 17 topics, which will support delegates’ continuing education through COPE and CET accreditation, and an educators’ programme, which focuses on six key areas of optometric education. Lectures and seminars will be presented by leading experts from across the globe including Prof Brien Holden, Prof Thomas Freddo and Drs Randall Thomas and Ron Melton.
The Congress will also offer an exhibition of clinical videos and photographs, a public outreach programme and a trade exhibition with more than 40 international and national exhibitors
For more information on the programme and to register for the Congress please visit www.worldcongressofoptometry.org
Bookings open for College's first pre-reg conference
Bookings have opened for Insight, the College of Optometrists’ first conference for pre-registration trainees, and two-thirds of the tickets are already sold.
Being held in Birmingham on Sunday 22 November, Insight will bring the work based assessment and OSCE to life with sessions designed specifically to support trainees as they progress through the Scheme for Registration.
Highlights will include a:
• clinical lecture on communication in the consulting room by renowned speaker, Professor Bruce Evans FCOptom
• look at recent trainee performance and what you can learn from it
• group session on contact lenses
• Q&A with the College’s Lead Assessor and Head of Examinations
• Q&A with recently qualified optometrists, from a variety of work settings, who will be on hand to share their experiences and advice.
Speaking about his lecture Communication in optometry - mind reading and time travel in the consulting room, Bruce Evans said: “Communication is a key skill for optometrists and a key overarching theme across all assessments for a pre-reg trainee. I am excited to have the opportunity to present a lecture on the subject to trainees who are just beginning their careers in the consulting room.
“I will talk about the typical comments patients make and what these can tell us about their anxieties and needs. The importance of relaxing the patient by helping them fully express their concerns will be highlighted, emphasising when open and closed questions are appropriate and helpful to completing the eye examination in a timely way.”
Joseph Oakley, the College’s Head of Examinations, said: “We are really excited about this new event and very pleased to see how popular it is already with future trainees. We know that pre-registration training at first can appear daunting but we are eager to dispel the myths and give you the tools and support you need to succeed. We also realise that pre-reg trainees are eager to learn as much as they can, and would welcome an opportunity to attend an event run by the College. With that in mind, we have put together a range of activities tailored to the specific needs of the pre-registration optometrist, giving you a flavour of the support you can look forward to as a fully qualified member post-registration.”
DOCET launches new distance learning module: The Ageing Eye: Adapting the routine
Domiciliary eyecare (3 interactive CET points)
DOCET has launched a new online learning module as part of its series on The Ageing Eye. The module can be completed, free of charge, by UK registered optometrists and provides three interactive CET points.
In Adapting the routine – Domiciliary eyecare expert contributors take viewers through a domiciliary eye examination, as well as providing advice, useful facts and their own top tips on examining elderly patients in their own homes or nursing homes. The programme covers key aspects such as effective communication, legal requirements, necessary equipment and adapting clinical techniques.
Rob Hogan, DOCET Chair says: ‘Older patients can have increasingly complex issues with their vision but, for many, visiting their local practice is not an option. We hope that this timely programme will not only be helpful to those optometrists already carrying out domiciliary visits, but will also encourage others to consider providing this valuable service.
Optometrists can play an important role in ensuring that patients unable to visit their local practice are not at a disadvantage and that they receive the highest possible standards of professional eye health care, whether that is in their own homes or in a care home.’
The Ageing Eye: Adapting the routine – Domiciliary Eyecare is available at www.docet.info/CET.
College of Optometrists’ third Optometry Tomorrow Bitesize conference to be held in the heart of Manchester
Some of the most well-received lectures, discussions and workshops from the College of Optometrists’ recent conference will be repeated at a one-day event at the Renaissance Manchester City Centre Hotel. Optometry Tomorrow Bitesize will take place on Sunday 27 September, and will give delegates the chance to earn up to nine interactive CET points in a single day, including peer review.
This is an opportunity for those who couldn’t make it to Optometry Tomorrow 2015 to participate in a range of interactive CET sessions, and experience firsthand the high-quality professional development the College’s annual conference offers. Julie Rafaluk MCOptom, a delegate at Optometry Tomorrow 2015 said: “It just gets better each year and I'm returning to work with a new zest to deliver the best to my patients. I can't wait for next year.”
The Optometry Tomorrow Bitesize programme includes five lectures and five workshops on topics such as myopia and soft contact lenses, and glaucoma through the eyes of the patient, as well as five peer discussion sessions that will allow delegates to discuss case studies on: binocular vision, infection control and optical appliances. Johnson & Johnson Vision Care is the headline sponsor of the event, which is set to attract 250 delegates.
College President, David Parkins FCOptom, said: “Optometry Tomorrow 2015 in Brighton was a great success, and this is a fantastic opportunity for those who were unable to attend to hear from some of the industry’s most engaging and knowledgeable speakers.
“Last year, Optometry Tomorrow Bitesize 2014 at Ascot Racecourse was attended by 195 optometrists with over 1,000 CET points being earned, so this is proving to be a great way for the College to take conference highlights to different parts of the country.”
Bookings are now open. Tickets are just £60 for members (£40 for those who qualified from July 2012), with workshop tickets available at £30 each. Places are limited so those wishing to attend must book soon to avoid disappointment. A non-member rate is also available.
Consultant ophthalmologist to discuss cranial nerve disease at College of Optometrists’ event in Wrexham
Adam Bates, Consultant Ophthalmologist for Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust will present a lecture on neuro-ophthalmology this month at the College of Optometrists’ free member CET event in Wrexham.
Within the lecture, ‘The perils and pitfalls of swollen discs and double vision: What to look out for when referring neuro-ophthalmology patients’, Mr Bates will describe the different presentations of visual pathway and other cranial nerve disease and will outline what constitutes an urgent hospital referral.
Mr Bates said: “This lecture will discuss the symptoms, clinical signs and what tests to perform when identifying and diagnosing the causes of optic nerve disease. Delegates will leave with an understanding of how to interpret a visual field plot, describe any abnormality using recognised terminology and how to identify the cause of visual field defects.
“I will also highlight what I feel is the best information to provide the patient before their hospital visit and the appropriate information to include in a referral letter.”
Delegates can earn up to four interactive CET points if they also take part in the event’s peer discussion session, covering cases on normal tension glaucoma, abusive patient, and change in Rx. The peer discussion will cover competencies on: communication, professional conduct and ocular disease.
Taking place on Thursday 25 June at the Best Western Cross Lanes Hotel from 6pm-9.30pm, the event includes a buffet and a chance to network with other optometrists from the region.
Booking opens for AOP autumn CET and events programme
The Association of Optometrists (AOP) has opened the booking for its extensive programme of continuing education and training (CET) and professional development courses throughout the country this autumn. 2015 sees the final year of the three year cycle for practitioners to gain their remaining 36 points and the AOP offers a comprehensive programme across all competencies and specialities to help meet and exceed these requirements.
The popular AOP peer review (three CET points) and legal roadshows (four interactive CET points) kick off the autumn events programme and are a great way to discuss and share tips on best practice. October sees the beginning of conference season, starting with the Hospital Optometrists Annual Conference (HOAC).
The HOAC (16+ CET points applied for) is a well-established, clinically-orientated event which focuses on work challenges faced in the hospital service, while providing for the education needs of practitioners. The HOAC will be held in Glasgow for the first time this year and is not exclusive to hospital optometrists – all optometrists and dispensing opticians are welcome to attend.
Next on the calendar is London 2015 Education Destination (20+ CET points applied for).
This event will focus on optometry as a specialist area for therapeutics-qualified optometrists although most sessions will have general interactive points of interest to all optometrists. The National Optical Conference (NOC) follows in November with the AOP Awards 2015 hosted during the event. The NOC offers two days to discover the latest in community eye services and share experiences and knowledge with fellow practitioners from around the country.
2015 saw the launch of new AOP career advice sessions, specifically designed to help improve communication, management and workplace skills. Two new career sessions will run in October and November, Building your powers of persuasion (two CET points) and Developing and using confident behaviour (two CET points applied for).
Waiting for September…for that special trip to Paris? Linked with a visit to SILMO 2015
With its new communication campaign, SILMO, the Optical Fair, is marking a new milestone by highlighting its uniqueness (creativity, elegance, innovation) and asserting its influence around a symbolic reference: the world's largest optics store.
In the meantime, as we eagerly await the grand opening on 25 September 2015 and the developments that will accompany this "new" fair, we invite you to come and experience the SILMO ACADEMY programme.
The scientific conference which, for 5 years now, has been bringing together highly qualified specialists and delivering scientific insights and advances on vision. It helps opticians and all professionals who so wish to gain an understanding of current research and thereby enrich their medical knowledge and initial training.
"VISUAL EFFICIENCY", the optimisation of all available means to improve eyesight, is the theme chosen for this latest edition. It will be developed around three keynote lectures, two practical workshops and a poster exhibition.
Lectures are to be held on the Sunday and the Monday
Sunday 27 September from 10:00 am to 12:45 pm
What is efficiency? Which cognitive processes and parameters characterise it? What are its requirements for everyday practice and some specific activities?
Sunday 27 September from 15:00 pm to 18:00 pm
Experts, contactologists and retinal or anterior segment surgeons will discuss the innovative techniques of visual efficiency optimisation for children and long-sighted or visually impaired adults.
Monday 28 September from 10:00 am to 13:00 pm
The specific problems of long-sighted people made explicit by a number of case studies in order to propose a support methodology for your daily life.
Sunday 27 and Monday 28 September between 13:15 pm and 14:45 pm
Analysis of the visual efficiency of Near Vision: a presentation of the Proximeter method as an effective tool for exploring the efficiency of near vision.
Visual efficiency of Visually Impaired people, targeting the refraction of the visually impaired, an essential prerequisite for any rehabilitation care.
The exhibition of posters and written communications is presented at the entrance to the fair so that it is accessible to as many visitors as possible and is open to all professionals.
People wishing submit their work, whatever the theme, can register before 15 June 2015 by sending the title of the poster to Silmoacademy@silmoparis.fr
The prize for the best poster will be awarded by the conference participants who can give their opinion by taking part in the proposed vote throughout the conference.
Optrafair confirms its place as the UK’s best attended trade show for the optical industry
18 May 2015: The Federation of Manufacturing Opticians (FMO), today announced that the official audit has revealed that more than 6,500 people attended Optrafair 2015, confirming the show’s place as the leading and best attended UK optical trade show.
Total unique attendance over the three days at Birmingham’s NEC was 6,510* (8,761 including repeat visits).
Optrafair says it is acknowledged as the UK’s most comprehensive exhibition and educational conference for the industry. It was instantly hailed a success this year by major exhibitors who said that the people attending Optrafair 2015 came with a purpose and were of a high quality. Others commented that they had taken more orders in the first morning of Optrafair than they had taken in total during other recent shows.
Barry Dibble FMO Chairman says, “The numbers speak for themselves, Optrafair is the largest audited trade event for eye care professionals in the UK. Year after year it is trusted not only to deliver the leading international companies, such as Topcon, who only exhibit in the UK at Optrafair, but also reliable visitor numbers and the right quality visitors – the decision makers. Exhibitors who prepared well for the show reaped the benefits for their business.
“Optrafair is grateful for the tremendous support it receives from its association partners and the profession as a whole which recognises the ongoing value of the show.”
Optrafair Director Malcolm Polley says, “This year’s show was packed with trend setting fashion, the latest technological developments and world class education from renowned international speakers. There is a reason why leading industry players choose Optrafair as the best platform to launch products and services to the industry.”
The UK optical profession from practitioners, practice staff and support teams, international manufacturers and distributors of optical products and equipment to educators, business service providers and retailers, have supported Optrafair since its inception in 1978.
Leading brands including suppliers and distributors of frames, lenses, contact lenses and technical equipment attend Optrafair to grow brand awareness, showcase products and services, meet customers and make sales.
Heidelberg Engineering UK Director, Krysten Williams said, “We have not seen such a surge in demand for technology since retinal cameras stole the show in 1999 – it has been a similar scenario at this year’s Optrafair.”
After an eight year absence from the show, Silhouette’s Managing Director, David Chalmers commented, “We couldn’t be more pleased with how the show went.”
David Baker, Managing Director, International Eyewear said, “We saw more customers, achieved more orders and order value than ever before. We invested heavily in Optrafair and, from the exceptional overall response we had, invested wisely. We are very excited and looking forward to creating a similar buzz in 2016.”
Neal Grimason, Sales and Marketing Director, Continental Eyewear said, “We had a storming show – we exceeded our targets before Monday!”
Optical Service Limited, Managing Director David Eldridge was equally upbeat about Optrafair, “We had another terrific show. It was great to meet all our new and existing customers and to launch our latest products at the largest UK eyewear exhibition. We are already looking forward to 2016.”
Optrafair is highly valued by a community of practitioners, suppliers and educators to help eye care professionals expand their knowledge, grow awareness of new products and services, as well as gain continuing education and training points.
Peter Charlesworth, Managing Director of Perceptive, education partners for Optrafair reported record attendances for the CET sessions at this year’s Optrafair.
During the three day show 930 people from 18 countries attended 2168 CET sessions and were awarded 2966 CET points. The figures represent an approximate 10% increase on London 2014 and an increase of 30% compared to Birmingham 2013.
It was standing room only for the highlight of the programme – a lively Question Time session where the UK’s leading retailers took questions from the floor about the future of retail optics.
Chaired by BBC Radio 4’s Peter White, the illustrious industry panel included: Doug Perkins, co-founder of Specsavers, Ben Fletcher, Managing Director, Boots Opticians; Ryan Leighton, CEO, Leightons Opticians & Hearing Care; Peter Noakes, Optometrist & Partner, Noakes Habermehl and Kerr Opticians, and Imran Hakim, Director of Entrepreneurship, UMIP.
In a wide-ranging debate, the panel reflected on the impact of innovation and online optometry, differing business models for growth, pricing, the effect of grocer advertising as well as the impact of free eye tests on the public’s perception of the value and importance of the standard eye test.
Ben Fletcher, Managing Director, Boots Optician said, “With a good mix of companies and personalities, the panel debate certainly proved a lively discussion with some important questions raised by the audience.
“It was great to hear feedback first-hand from the professionals that make the optics industry the exciting and dynamic place that it is. Panel discussions are a great way of tackling some of the important issues that our industry faces and it certainly provided everyone, myself included, with some interesting and useful food for thought.”
Linda Ford, GOC Head of Education and Standards says, “Optrafair was a great opportunity for us to engage with registrants. We spoke to hundreds of delegates about our ongoing standards review and also held a series of successful CET discussion groups to test the draft standards with registrants.”
Advance bookings for Optrafair 2016 (NEC 9-11 April) are buoyant with exhibitors already securing their preferred stands for next year. More than 50% of the 2015 exhibitors rebooked for 2016 during the show.
Eyespace, winner of 'Optical Supplier of the Year 2015' is booked for 100% Optical 2016
Winner of Optical Supplier of the Year 2015, Eyespace brings you contemporary British style at its finest.
Eyespace are a brand that celebrates quality and takes time to perfect their products. Whether you're looking for luxury eyewear with broad appeal or a collection of fashionable yet affordable frames, their award-winning team help make business truly effortless. Every Eyespace frame is designed and developed here in the UK – ensuring they perfectly meet your needs for style, comfort and fit – and they avidly follow all areas of fashion and design, meaning their 6 designer-led product collections differentiate your practice portfolio and keep you ahead of the curve: you're guaranteed to find the perfect option to suit every age, demographic, taste, face shape and budget.
ABDO to play bigger role at 100% Optical in 2016
ABDO has confirmed that it will be actively involved at 100% Optical in 2016 and is looking to extend the successful ABDO Arms concept that proved to be so popular at the 2015 show.
Michael Potter, ABDO's head of marketing and communications said: "The ABDO Arms is designed to be a convivial networking area were ABDO members, together with other professionals, can meet to discuss issues that affect the optical sector and the vital role that ABDO members play in assuring that quality eye care is provided to the public. We are looking to build on the successful elements of the ABDO Arms, that proved to be popular with those attending this year's show, and are currently evaluating some new ideas and innovations to ensure that there's even more on offer in 2016."