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INFO CLIP | Xtra By Vue Point
June 22, 2017
Canadian Eye Care Business Review
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Contact Lens World Comes Together in Liverpool 
 
The past, present and future of contact lenses were put into sharp focus as practitioners from across the world with a “passion” for the subject came together for the industry’s leading flagship event. [+]
 
 
 
 
ADVERTORIAL
 
 
Embracing the Future of Our Industry
Embracing the Future of Our Industry
 
By Pierre Bertrand, President of Essilor Canada

I often get asked what the future of our Canadian Optical industry holds, I usually answer in one word: OPPORTUNITY. The independent Canadian optical industry is facing unprecedented transformation influenced by new consumer behaviour, demographic changes, increasing competition, business growth, market consolidation, emergence of new entrants, etc. We see these challenges as opportunities to change, to do things differently in our industry. At Essilor Canada, we are confident about the future of the independent optical industry and strongly believe that by working together we can create value and differentiation to the benefit of all parties involved – consumers, eyecare professionals, and suppliers.

Whether we are a manufacturer or an eyecare professional, we share the same goal: provide the best visual solution to Canadians and help them see better, every day. A good understanding of the market’s dynamics, an open discussion and the desire to reinvent ourselves are key elements in co-creating a positive future for our industry.

A changing marketplace

Evolution is inevitable and we have to embrace change in order to be successful. Look what happened to books, apparel, and travel. Their businesses drastically transformed in the past years: from brick and mortar stores to online, and vice versa sometimes. In fact, many “pure play” online companies, such as Warby Parker in our industry but also Casper (mattresses) and Harry’s (razors), have found that they needed consumers to experience their products in old-school brick and mortar locations as well.

The market is changing and more than ever it can be looked at as a source of inspiration and growth, in order to meet the needs of today and anticipate tomorrow’s. Right here in Canada, here are some of the untapped business opportunities that we have identified:

  • Canadians change their eyeglasses every 2.7 years on average¹¹ and 25% of Canadians eyeglass wearers buy multiple pairs². This provides us with fantastic opportunities to increase the renewal rate and bring the consumer back in the store sooner and to stimulate multiple pair purchases.

  • 68% of Adult Canadians wear corrective lenses² and 84% of Adult Canadians wear sunglasses … but only 12% of Adult Canadians wear prescription sunglasses¹⁰. If only half of these eyeglass wearers got sunwear in their prescription, we could TRIPLE the category.

  • We estimate that there are approximately 16M presbyopes and 17M single vision users¹. The younger generations – Millennials (or Gen-Y) and Centennials (or Gen-Z) are the future of our industry. Getting to know them better can provide eyecare professionals with a sustainable competitive advantage both as an employer and an eye care provider. It is therefore important to understand their needs, which are totally different from their elders’, and develop new ways to attract them and retain them since they will become the progressive lens wearers of tomorrow.

  • Myopia is a growing problem that affects approximately 30% of the Canadian population (11M). Its prevalence is increasing dramatically among children: from 6% with 6-8 years old to 29% with 11-13 years old⁷.

  • 72% of Canadian adults aged between 18-39 years old (10M) use at least 3 electronic devices per day. This heavy usage of digital devices including smartphones, laptop, tablets and televisions has an impact on their lifestyle. 90% of them reported at least one eye-related problem linked to digital devices. The two major symptoms experienced are tired eyes and headaches, followed by a disrupted sleep cycle, neck and back pain, etc⁸.

  • The population of Canada is growing, primarily due to immigration which represented 7M people in 2011 (over 20% of the total population). More than 2/3 of the immigrants originate primarily from East Asian countries and Europe⁴. Ethnic populations like Asians and Indians are more likely to develop cataract, AMD, glaucoma and have a 90% prevalence of myopia⁵. Besides, Asian populations have specific needs due to their facial anatomy and have a lower awareness of the need for regular vision care.

  • There are more than 5.5 million Canadians with a major eye disease that could cause vision loss such as Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD), Cataracts, Glaucoma, Diabetic Retinopathy and Refractive error⁹.

  • We know that approximately 5M people need vision correction¹¹ and do not have it today: 6% of adult Canadians² and nearly 25% of school-age children; and those numbers are even higher in marginalized communities. Did you know that 86% of Canadian children have never had an eye exam prior to school? There is a significant opportunity with children under the age of 6, all the more when we know that 80% of a child’s learning before the age of 12 comes through his eyes³. Good vision has a strong impact on learning, development and education.

‘‘Innovation is the ability to see change as an opportunity, not a threat’’ – Steve Jobs

These unmet needs and business potential make us optimistic about our industry and its evolution. Working in collaboration, sharing best practices and thinking outside the box may be the best tools to help us evolve and develop innovative ideas to address those opportunities...

Continue reading this article at at www.eyecarebusiness.ca
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Essilor Launches Varilux® RoadPilot™
Available starting June 20, 2017, Varilux® RoadPilot lenses are perfectly adapted for driving with large fields of vision where it matters the most to drivers, allowing presbyopes to fully enjoy the road. [+]
 
 
 
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