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Opchat,PHN's Online Optical magazine

Opchat News:

The Optical Sector's Daily News Magazine
keeping you up to date with new products, professional matters,
industry news and exhibitions
and much more whenever and wherever you want to read it
for today’s news including archived stories.


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OGI's Seraphin Here Comes the "Suns"

Marigold by OGI

Five original Seraphin sunspecs emerge for the OGI spring collection, each with unique, key features and noticeable innovative techniques.

Thea extends Blepha Range

Blepha products from Thea
Thea Pharmaceuticals have extended the leading Blepha range of lid care products with the new launch of BLEPHADEMODEX® Eye Lid Wipes. 

New Barbour Sunwear from Norville

Barbour sunglasses
Norville introduces New polarised sun models BS073 and BS074 both in the aviator style. 

Nostalgia from OKO

Clip Solaire for Joan by OKO

Inspiration or nostalgia? With JOAN, the brands aims to find a meeting point between modern technology and the aesthetic heritage of the 30’s.

FYSH The 2019 Sunglass Collection

FYSH 2036
Due to the success last year, the FYSH sunwear 2019 collection has grown to 13 new styles, each available in 2 or 3 colour combinations. 

Blackfin Spring 2019 Preview

Ventura from Blackfin

The Spring 2019 collection displays the total Blackfin aesthetic vision in which the sophisticated mood of the new communications campaign and the new stand for Mido are faithfully reflected in its design.

New Kids on the block from Norville - Mai-Zee

Mai-Zee new model

New to the Mai-Zee collection for 2019 model is MZ068. 

Pince-Nez returns to favour for handy SOS reader

Pince Nez as reader from Dibble

Pince-Nez glasses were developed more than 100 years ago to give wearers a pair of small, portable frames they could easily keep in their front pockets between uses. 

Many more exciting new products on our New Products Pages.

Suppliers guide and optical directory

The Latest News

Hakim Group announced as Platinum Sponsors at Optrafair Exchange

Hakim Logo
The Hakim Group are proud to partner with Optrafair Exchange as Platinum sponsor for 2019. The sponsorship forms part of the group’s ongoing strategy and commitment to the optical industry, through showcasing their award-winning approach for independent opticians.

Black Diamond, The New Blackfin Stand at MIDO

Blackfin Diamond Stand
Diamonds are the quintessence of priceless value in its most tangible sense; a black diamond might be considered the opposite of short-lived.

Mondottica International announces license renewals

Mondottica International proudly announces the global renewal of the eyewear licenses for Hackett London and Pepe Jeans through to the end of 2024. 

New permanent GOC CEO and Registrar announced

The General Optical Council (GOC) has announced that its interim Chief Executive and Registrar, Lesley Longstone, has been appointed to the role permanently.

Heidelberg Engineering shortlisted for Supplier of the Year Award

Heidelberg Engineering has been shortlisted for the coveted Optician Awards Optical Supplier of the Year Award 2019. Companies who have reached this stage have been selected on the basis of the rigorous criteria laid out by the journal –

Homeless Charity makes urgent call for volunteers

VCHP Volunteers needed
Volunteer optometrists, dispensing opticians and team leaders are urgently needed by Vision Care for Homeless centres around the country.

Data Security and Protection Toolkit Update, IGT now replaced.

The Data Security and Protection Toolkit (DSPT) has replaced the Information Governance Toolkit (IGT) as NHS Digital’s (formerly HSCIC) compliance check for information governance.

Record growth allows expansion at Optinet.

Optinet GrowthMike Fegan PEC svs
Optinet, the IT services division of the National Eyecare Group (NEG), has declared 2018 its most successful year ever with record installations of its flagship Optinet FLEX practice management system (PMS).

GOC suspends Hounslow Dispensing Optician

The General Optical Council (GOC), the UK regulator for optometrists and dispensing opticians, has decided to suspend a dispensing optician based in Heston, Hounslow from its register for a period of nine months. 

GOC News from Council 13 February 2019

Comprehensive report from meeting held on Wednesday, Business Standards, Budgets, Education, CET, and more

LOCSU's Primary Eyecare Services has a new Chair.

Mike Fegan PEC svs
Primary Eyecare Services Ltd is one of the companies created by LOCSU into which many of the smaller Primary Eyecare companies have merged.

Nominations open for 2019 BCLA Awards

Laura Reece
Nominations are now open for the 2019 BCLA Awards, with the nation’s leading eye care practitioners vying for some of the profession’s most coveted crowns.

OC updates "Making Accurate Claims in Wales"

The new guidance is based on the most recent regulations on the NHS General Ophthalmic Services (GOS) and optical vouchers and payments in Wales.

AOI highlights deep concerns over eyecare in Ireland

Association of Optometrists (AOI) Chief Executive Sean McCrave said Ireland’s eye-care services need to be reformed to meet ever-growing demand, as the population both increases and ages.

Priority treatment for Welsh Patients at risk of sight loss.

Last week the Welsh Government announced a £3.3m investment which aims to ensure that patients in Wales who are at the greatest risk of going blind receive prioritised treatment. 

GOC Registrar steps down

The General Optical Council (GOC) has announced that its Chief Executive and Registrar, Vicky McDermott, has stood down to spend more time with her family following the birth of her daughter.

FODO announces new Company Structure and first-ever MD

Harjit Sandhu
In response to growing membership across its eye and hearing care businesses FODO has announced a new company structure and the appointment of Harjit Sandhu as its first-ever Managing Director.

Blackfin launches Natural Awareness Campaign

Blackfin Leven
The die is cast, Year Three of Phase Three has been accomplished: the product, the genuine story and a brand image which has reached a stylistic and conceptual maturity in the design of its eyewear, the new exhibition space and the latest 2019 communications campaign.

Belvie appoints ZED-Com for communications

Belvie the French eyewear brand, result of the passion of Optika, a French optician with 7 shops and a 40-year history in eyewear, has appointed Zed_Comm as press office and media relations agency for communications in the trade Europe communication activities and the management of social channels.

Another New Connection for Mainline

Mainline Optical Connections announce their new partnership with MEI, they are now the distributor for the UK and Ireland retail market. The addition of the NoBlock system to the edger has proven ground-breaking, 

Opchat News opens Optrafair Exchange Preview Pages

3DNA at Waterside on preview pages
As we open today our preview pages to showcase exciting stories that will be told at Optrafair Exchange, Waterside Labs become the first to encourage us to attend their stand. 

All your CET needs under one roof!

The entire optical profession will soon unite under one roof at Optrafair Exchange for three days of inspiration and opportunity to source the very latest products across the sector. Browse an exhibition hall filled with some of the leading companies in the industry, some of which have not attended any other UK event. 

More news here and archived news quarter back by quarter or tap on the upper coloured tabs to go to your favourite story topics.Or use the Search box above

Latest Briefings

Our latest business briefings:


We have a series of briefings revised in May 2013 on VAT:

VAT Briefings Introduction


Paying Too Much VAT Out of Net Profits?

Advantages of Stock Modules for VAT

Practice Management Software

A series of briefings revised in May 2013 on the uses of practice management software:

Practice Management Software: Introduction

Practice Management Software: The Basics

Practice Management Software: Advanced Briefing

Practice Management Software: The Paperless Practice

Improving Business Strengths

Go to our Improving Business Strengths Briefing

Keeping Stock Levels to a Minimum

Go to our Keeping Stock Levels to a Minimum Briefing

Contact Lens Report

EUROMCONTACT Contact Lens Report

Report on Drivers' Vision

Report on Drivers' Vision: A report published by The European Council of Optometry and Optics (ECOO)

The Bribery Act

The Bribery Act: Optical Confederation Guidance


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