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Opchat Magazine Industry NewsIndustry News, April to June 2016

Waterside Appoints New Operations Manager.

Essilor, a UK lens manufacturer has been ranked among the top five green companies in the world.

SHAMIR acquires minority shares of LENSTEC.

Ezfit No Block: Ophthalmic Lens Edging without Centering Blocks now possible for Small Labs And Optical Stores.

Norville announces revolutionary WECO C.6.

ESSILOR opens Young Eyes in double education mission.

Britains got Talent! Two Companies have been awarded the Queens Award for Industry.

FYSH UK Launches a sophisticated new Ad campaign for 2016

Transitions back on TV.

Waterside Appoints New Operations Manager.

June 2016

Stewart Gemmell WatersideWaterside Laboratories has appointed Stuart Gemmell to the newly created role of Operations Manager. The Southampton based full service labs’ focus is offering independent opticians quality products with exceptional service and Stuart will be responsible for ensuring these high standards continue to be met.

Stuart brings with him extensive expertise in customer service, business analysis and systems, together with facilities management and health and safety. Beginning his career in the British Army, Stuart has been highly successful working across a range of industries. He ran a computer hardware maintenance operation serving such clients as North Yorkshire and Cornwall County Councils, various universities and HM Treasury. After this he ran property maintenance services for B&Q plc and Safeway.

A qualified Facilities Manager, he has carried out consultancy on FM Help Desks for the likes of Orange (Bangkok), Pfizer, University of Kent and London Guildhall University. His most recent role was as a consultant for SMEs within the Hampshire area where a major client was a very successful independent Opticians.

Stuart says: “ It is exceptionally exciting to be asked to join a company that has just won one of the most prestigious awards in its field. Waterside rightly considers itself to be at the forefront of technology in the optical industry, and we have a renowned customer service team. I am able to bring experience of being involved with a successful practice and fully understand the obstacles independents face. This helps me bring my acumen of business systems and practices to the role.”

Bob Forgan, Managing Director of Waterside says: “Stuart is joining Waterside at an exciting time. His extensive knowledge and expertise will be a major asset. As part of our team he will work with us to continue to evolve our services and product range to help our customers compete and differentiate themselves in today’s demanding market.”

Essilor, a UK lens manufacturer has been ranked among the top five green companies in the world.

June 2016

Thornbury-based Essilor was named in the top five of Newsweek’s 2016 Green Rankings.

The rankings assess the environmental performance of the 500 largest companies in the US and the 500 largest globally.

Managing director of Essilor UK, Mike Kirkley, and the 400-strong workforce at the laboratory near Bristol are jubilant.

Mike said: “This is wonderful news and well-deserved by each and every one of the Essilor team here at Thornbury and at our plants and labs all over the world.

“Making the top five green companies in the world is an incredible achievement and one we have all worked hard for. It is a constant goal to be up there with the most environmentally-conscious organisations across the globe.”

To Essilor, living up to its environmental duties is second nature. “For 170 years, Essilor has demonstrated that a commitment to sustainable development is part of our DNA,” said Mike.

“We’re honoured to be recognised by the Newsweek 2016 Green Rankings for our accomplishments.

“These clearly support what we believe to be our fundamental contribution to achieving the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, namely our mission to improve lives by improving sight.”

Essilor’s ‘footprint’ is larger and more diverse than ever with 61,000 employees in 63 countries, 540 production sites in five continents and nearly Ł16 billion in purchasing.

Mike said: “The company’s significant growth in recent years, along with changes in regulations and stakeholder expectations, has led Essilor to raise the bar regarding its environmental sustainability responsibilities.

That is mirrored at home, in Thornbury, and across the globe. Mike said: “All over the world, each Essilor entity is engaged in a continuous improvement approach.

“It contributes at its own level to the main drivers of the company’s sustainable and responsible development, reducing water and energy consumption, innovating, promoting diversity, ensuring quality working conditions and connecting suppliers and customers to its mission.

Essilor’s results are a measure of its success. Mike said: “Concerning the optimisation of natural resources management, the company has reduced water consumption by 40 per cent and energy consumption by 22 per cent in its mass production plants over the past seven years.”

Newsweek’s 2016 Green Rankings, run in partnership with Corporate Knights and HIP Investor, is the latest in a line of accolades.

In 2015, Essilor was ranked, for the fourth consecutive year, among the Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World (Global 100) Index by Corporate Knights.

US magazine Forbes also placed the group among the World’s Most Innovative Companies for the fifth year running.

Essilor was also selected as one of 50 companies that are changing the world in the first edition of Fortune magazine’s ‘Change the World’ list.

SHAMIR acquires minority shares of LENSTEC.

June 2016

As of 1st June 2016, SHAMIR announces the acquisition of a minority of LENSTEC shares in UK.

Both companies have a strong foothold with ECP’s and will consequently enjoy the benefit of operational synergies while integrating their UK based service network with LENSTEC Nationwide Rx laboratories.

The acquisition provides LENSTEC access to the full portfolio of SHAMIR premium products and services, thereby enhancing its already wide-ranging choice of technology, products and services to the UK ECP.

Shamir and LenstecBoth Sales, Production and Marketing teams offer continued support and expert Industry knowledge, coupled with personal and professional relationships and will remain separate.

The Lenstec Optical Group will continue to offer its full portfolio of Branded lenses and own label products across key suppliers.

We look forward to continuation and expansion of our business cooperation with our valued customers in the UK.

Picture – sitting left to right, Nigel Castle (Managing director Lenstec) Phil Bareham (General manager Shamir UK) Lior Regev (CFO Shamir international)

Standing left to right , Gerard Donovan (Financial Director Lenstec) Shai Michael (VP Shamir international) Yair Di Segni (General Counsel Shamir international)

Shamir are sponsors of the professions free Opchat News Pages provided by PHN. Please visit their pages and support them where possible. Click here

Ezfit No Block: Ophthalmic Lens Edging without Centering Blocks now possible for Small Labs And Optical Stores.

June 2016

Presented for the first time at Mido 2016, EzFit No Block – the latest and revolutionary compact machine developed by MEI – has met with a huge market success in just a few months.

EzFit No Block

This new machine is an important achievement for MEI since, thanks to this product, for the first time small labs and high-end or high volume retail stores can now carry out ophthalmic lens edging without blocks (until now this was only possible with high-output MEI machinery designed for large-scale companies).

Thanks to the NoBlock module, which is also available as an upgrade, EzFit can automatically carry out error-free lens centering without blocks.

The NoBlock includes a lensmeter, Blockless centering system for single vision, bifocal and progressive lenses, and automatic machine loading/unloading with a dual loading arm. This module allows the next lens to be loaded while the machine is edging the previous lens and, in combination with EzFit, enables the machine operator to correctly position the lens without any specific optical skills and automatically compensating for any errors.

The operator simply positions the lens under a centering system that centers and removes the lens to introduce it in the cutting chamber.

The NoBlock module can work in two different ways: continuously, to maximize output, or in single pairs, to edge both lenses in sequence automatically. With the continuous method, EzFit can work without interruptions, allowing a new job to be prepared while the previous one is still in progress.

With the single pair method, both lenses are loaded and then edging is performed automatically.

Based on TBA (Throw the Block Away) technology, which is already present in some MEI machines, the NoBlock system streamlines the workflow and makes it even more competitive for small labs and optical chains. “Industrial companies have stopped using centering blocks for some time now and we thought it was important to offer this benefit to smaller companies as well”, commented MEI CEO and Technical Director, Stefano Sonzogni. “The comments have been very good and demonstrate that our desire to meet the needs of clients is appreciated”, Sonzogni continued.

EzFit No-Block will be available in November, when the first installations will be developed.

Norville announces revolutionary WECO C.6.

May 2016

The most intelligent power tool in your workshop, says Norville.

WECO C.6 is a fully automatic HD camera blocker that revolutionises tracing, centring, and blocking.

Its state-of-the-art technology offering possibilities never seen in the industry before now.

Just take a look at what makes WECO C.6 such an innovation.

WECO C.6 incorporates unique Gravitech® technology which uses one and the same referential axis for all steps:

WECO C6 Gravity tracing (< 4 seconds!) with auto lens side detection

• Blocking on gravity centre

• Edging around geometrical centre

• Parallax free

• Perfect fit!

WECO C.6 houses a Hartmann-Shack wave-front sensor providing:

WECO C6 high processing speed

• very precise measuring results

• visualisation of the entire lens design with power mapping

• auto-blocking of prism lenses



WECO C.6 offers the opportunity to:

WECO C6 check the shape against the actual lens design

• measure the lens point-by-point

• modify the shape according to measurement data exactly as needed!




WECO C.6 also:

• has a multi-touch screen with swipe function between pages (like a tablet)

• visualises lens engravings

WECO C6 copies/pastes drill data

• stores 10,000 shapes & 5,000 jobs

• has a very complete drill menu

• offers freehand Shape Design 2.0


Perfect partner of WECO E.6 and E.5 system edgers

Is there a space waiting for WECO C.6 in your lab?

ESSILOR opens Young Eyes in double education mission.

May 2016

Lens manufacturer Essilor has embarked on a pioneering education mission with neighbouring schools, screening students to raise eye care awareness while helping them learn how to design and build telescopes.

Essilor in the UK and Ireland has manufactured lenses at its Thornbury site near Bristol for 42 years, and is reaching out to local schools to prepare them for employment while screening their eyes at the same time.

Castle Scholl at EssilorIt is working with Castle School in Thornbury and Marlwood School in Alveston, both in South Gloucestershire, sending teams to go into the schools to screen hundreds of youngsters, to show whether the children need a full eye examination.

Managing director Mike Kirkley said it was all part of an eye care and health education awareness initiative among children, school staff and parents.

He said: “We are passionate about helping young children as we know that more than 90 per cent of a child’s learning will be gained through sight.

“Research shows that children with some form of visual correction needs do not achieve their full potential. We believe this should not happen anywhere, but certainly not here, in the UK, in 2016.”

In addition, the students are going into Essilor’s Thornbury laboratory for weekly project work, learning how to produce a telescope, spy glass and forcimeter, and learn about optics, refraction and lens glazing.

Essilor’s head of quality Pete Dodd said: “Working with these young people is so inspiring. They do 80 per cent of the design and production work themselves. With the telescope, we set them the task of working on a paper tube, then a plastic tube and the final stainless steel telescope.

“It’s amazing to see the transformation in them during the project and so encouraging to see them achieving and even exceeding their target school grades.
Many came in to the laboratory during their own free time, wanting to work rather than kick a football around”.

The company has also worked with neighbouring Charfield Primary School where young children produced their own newspaper, the Charfield Chatter, interviewing Mike Kirkley then selling advertising space locally through cold-calling.

The Charfield school-children and Mike Kirkley were filmed by BBC Points West news at the Essilor site. “The children were inspirational”, Mike said”.

Britains got Talent! Two Companies have been awarded the Queens Award for Industry.

April 2016

Queens Award for Industry

First up:

The Body Doctor joins the Business Elite as winners of a Queen’ Award for Enterprise 2016

Huddersfield-based medical device manufacturer, The Body Doctor Ltd, has won its first Queen’s Award for Enterprise with an Innovation Award for developing the Eye Doctor®, a hot eye compress for the relief of various eye conditions.

The Eye DoctorThe Eye Doctor® can be heated in the microwave or oven and placed over a patient’s eyes to treat common eye conditions: Dry Eye Disease, MGD, Blepharitis, as well as grittiness, irritation, inflamed, painful and sore eyes.

Dry Eye Disease and associated symptoms occur when oils in the glands thicken from the natural smooth oil to a buttery consistency. The Eye Doctor® reaches optimum temperature to melt the thickened buttery oil allowing it to become liquid again. Once glands are unblocked healthy oil is produced thereby alleviating
Dry Eye.

Features include a removable, washable cover, adjustable strap and storage pouch.

Dr. Hilary Jones says “The Eye Doctor® is a simple, ingenious and reusable solution for a wide range of common eye conditions. Use it regularly and you’ll see for yourself, just how effective it really is”.

The hot compress is filled with rehydrating BodyBeads® which naturally absorb moisture from the air when not in use, regenerating itself. The filling has been designed to fit snugly into the whole eye area.

The innovation that led to the award lies in the Eye Doctor® design combining a unique adjustable strap and removable, washable cover with the use of its special BodyBeads® that enables the compress to not only reach the optimum temperature but also to retain it, thereby effectively relieving symptoms.

Trading since 2012, the Body Doctors managing director, Ms Sue Grant said: “We feel very honoured to receive a Queen’s Award which recognises the dedication and hard work of the entire Body Doctor team.

This award is internationally recognised, we have had success with the product as far away as the USA and Japan. This is great for our local community and we hope job creation will just be a part of the achievement in winning the Queens’ award.”

And also for the second award received, Contamac the Worlds largest independent contact lens material supplier:

Contamac, the world’s largest independent supplier of contact and intraocular lens materials, with a global reputation for developing creative and innovative products, services and solutions, has been awarded a second Queen’s Award for Enterprise, this time in the Innovation category.

Contamac new premisesFollowing on from the Queen’s Award for International Trade in 2012, this second award recognises Contamac’s Definitive range of latheable silicone hydrogel materials, the first range of silicone hydrogel contact lens materials for the speciality contact lens industry.

Commenting on the award, Robert McGregor, Managing Director of Contamac, said: “We are delighted to have been honoured with this prestigious award not once, but twice. Innovation is what drives this company and is paramount to our success. We are committed to support the laboratory network and aim to provide innovations, which will continue to give the speciality contact lens industry a competitive edge.”

Last year the company completed the move to its new and fully purpose built headquarters in Saffron Walden.

The new facilities offer 250% more space to Contamac’s R&D team and are furnished with state of the art equipment. Robert McGregor added: “Our new facilities will further support our R&D efforts going forward. I am pleased the team here at Contamac have been recognised as being at the forefront of R&D.”

FYSH UK Launches a sophisticated new Ad campaign for 2016

April 2016

“The future belongs to the originals”: this is the theme of the brand new FYSH UK advertising campaign developed by WestGroupe and shot on location in Montreal, Quebec.

FYSH New ad campaign


The new campaign’s extraordinary visuals highlight the sophisticated mood of a collection dedicated to fashionable and confident women who embrace their own spirit through a refined style.

The alluring charm of the new visuals - featuring both optical frames and the new FYSH UK sunglass collection recently launched by WestGroupe - mirror the elegance and the fascination of the new eyewear proposals.

Each style is an explosion of bold colours, intricate patterns and polished design details that take inspiration from the latest fashion trends and, at the same time, reflect and emphasize the individuality and the intrinsic grace of the woman who wears it.

Depicted in real-life situations, women of the new FYSH UK campaign become stylish heroines of their own daily life: no matter if they are going to work or reading a book at home, these women always look elegant, sexy, authentic and unique with their FYSH UK frames.

The new campaign was first unveiled at Mido for the European, Asian, African and Australian markets, and will debut at Vision Expo East for the North and South American markets.

“We are exceptionally proud of the new FYSH UK campaign,” says WestGroupe Vice President of Product Development, Beverly Suliteanu. “Captured in the imagery is a sincere ‘joie de vivre’ felt by the entire production crew and the WestGroupe team.”

Transitions back on TV.

April 2016

Following successful years of brand building investments, Transitions will be back on TV again with a brand new commercial! Laurence Leboeuf is a well-known model and comedian in Canada. Laurence is the fresh new face of the Transitions TV campaign in 2016.

From April 25th until May 23rd you will see Laurence on ITV, Channel 4 and 5, Skysports 1, Sky Atlantic and ITV3 as on Home, Eurosport, Discovery Channel, Sky Arts, Sky News and ITV Encore.

During this same period the commercial will be shown on Video on Demand.

From March 14th until August 31st we will run Digital Displays via LinkedIn. Banners will invite consumers to go to the Transitions product website pages or to the store locator to learn more about the product and where to buy them.

You can take a peek preview of the ad by clicking HERE


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