Clean Beauty Is on the Rise

By Staff
Friday, May 24, 2019 3:22 PM The global organic personal care market size has been on the rise over the past few years and is projected to reach $25.11 billion by 2025, according to a new report by Grand View Research. This market includes “clean beauty” products, a term that has no precise definition but can includes cosmetics and personal care products that are free from synthetic fragrances, preservatives, parabens, petrochemicals, and harsh cleaners such as sodium lauryl sulfate. The report indicated that the growing demand for organic products has resulted in an increase in their availability in supermarkets, malls, and drugstores. In addition, growth in online markets where consumers can access a wide range of products from any part of the world has been a primary reason for increase in accessibility and is expected to remain a key contributing factor for the market growth over the forecast period. Online stores also give consumers the opportunity to gain access to products that would otherwise not be available in local stores and malls, which has made them especially popular in emerging markets.

Safilo Signs an Agreement to Sell Solstice Retail Business to Fairway LLC

By Staff
Friday, May 24, 2019 8:30 AM PADUA, Italy—Safilo Group S.p.A. announced Friday morning that it has reached an agreement to sell its U.S. retail chain Solstice to Fairway LLC. The terms of the deal were not disclosed. Fairway, a limited liability company, was formed by a group of investors active in the U.S. and in the European eyewear retail business, according to Safilo’s announcement. Safilo had announced in April that it had received “expressions of interest” in a deal for Solstice from unnamed buyers, as VMAIL reported. There were 73 Solstice locations in the U.S. at that time, of which 28 are outlets, a company spokesperson told VMAIL.

Prevent Blindness Designates June as Cataract Awareness Month to Help Educate Public

By Staff
Friday, May 24, 2019 12:27 AM CHICAGO—Prevent Blindness has declared June as Cataract Awareness Month to educate the public on risk factors, symptoms and treatment options. More than 25 million Americans are estimated to have cataract, a clouding of the eye's lens, which blocks or changes the passage of light into the eye. Most cataracts are caused by changes related to aging. However, other factors may cause cataracts to form including eye infections, some medicines (such as steroids), and injuries. Prolonged exposure to UV, and various diseases, such as diabetes or metabolic disorders, may also contribute to cataracts forming.

New Adhesive Gel Able to Repair Corneal Injuries

By Staff
Friday, May 24, 2019 12:25 AM A new biomaterial adhesive gel developed at Massachusetts Eye and Ear and Harvard Medical School could reduce the need for surgery to repair injuries to the cornea.The technology, known as GelCORE (gel for corneal regeneration) was detailed in the March issue of Science Advances under the title of “Sutureless repair of corneal injuries using naturally derived bioadhesive hydrogels.”

Oklahoma ODs Applaud Gov. Stitt and Legislature for State’s New Optometry Laws

By Staff
Friday, May 24, 2019 12:24 AM OKLAHOMA CITY—Many Oklahoma optometrists this week thanked the state legislature and Gov. Kevin Stitt for passing and signing legislation that removes from statute a prohibition on the sale of eyewear in non-medical, retail settings, according to an announcement by the Oklahoma Association of Optometric Physicians (OAOP).

Black Optical’s Ryan Bowling Gets Expanded Role and Adds Vice President of Sales Title

By Staff
Friday, May 24, 2019 12:18 AM OKLAHOMA CITY—Black Optical, an Oklahoma-based sun and eyewear retailer with three locations announced this week that Ryan Bowling will take on the role of vice president of sales in addition to his ongoing role as a managing partner.

Marketers Warm Up to Instagram

By Staff
Thursday, May 23, 2019 2:53 PM Instagram is having its moment in the marketing limelight. A new study from Social Media Examiner found that nearly three-quarters of marketers they surveyed are working with Instagram, a 7 point increase from last year’s report. Instagram was the only platform to see a significant jump in usage, with YouTube registering a modest 4 point increase in reported use. Marketers interest with Instagram may be somewhat motivated by the significant jump in the referral traffic coming from the image oriented social network. According to Merkle, Instagram experienced a 114 percent increase year-on-year in its referral traffic.

Let’s (Virtually) Try

By Staff
Thursday, May 23, 2019 12:25 AM Thelios was present within the LVMH booth at this year’s Viva Technology event, the world’s rendezvous for start-ups and leaders to celebrate innovation, held in Paris last week. The company teamed up with FittingBox to offer a technology to virtually try on glasses and sunglasses.

PE-Backed EyeSouth Expands into Tennessee Through Affiliation With Two Private Practices

By Staff
Thursday, May 23, 2019 12:24 AM ATLANTA—EyeSouth Partners, which is backed by the private equity firm Shore Capital Partners, recently announced its expansion into Tennessee with an affiliation with Cumberland Eye Care and Plateau ASC, located in Crossville, and Cookeville Eye Specialists and Perimeter ASC of Cookeville. The affiliations will establish EyeSouth’s initial presence in Tennessee, “which will be a key growth state for the company going forward,” according to the announcement. Each practice and surgery center will continue to operate under its brand, with no changes to its staff, physicians or locations, the announcement noted.

Safilo Reimburses Equity Linked Bonds, Completing Refinancing Plan

By Staff
Thursday, May 23, 2019 12:21 AM PADOVA, Italy—Safilo Group S.p.A. (Reuters SFLG.MI ) said yesterday that the Group has proceeded with the expected reimbursement of the €150,000,000 equity linked bonds 2014-2019 (ISIN XS1069899232). This completes the refinancing plan developed by the Group during 2018, for a total amount of €300,000,000 between the share capital increase and the new credit agreement expiring in 2023.

Virtual Consults Now Available With Leading Private Insurer Manulife

By Staff
Wednesday, May 22, 2019 12:25 AM Canada’s largest private health insurance provider, Manulife Financial and California-based digital health care provider, Akira Health, announced a partnership to provide Canadians with on-demand, virtual 24-7 anywhere, anytime medical consultations with clinicians.

Total ECP Acquires Bethesda Vision Care, Maryland-Based Practice of Michael Berenhaus, OD

By Staff
Wednesday, May 22, 2019 12:21 AM BLOOMINGTON, Ill.—Total Eye Care Partners (Total ECP) said Tuesday that it has acquired Bethesda Vision Care from Dr. Michael Berenhaus, a member and former president of the Maryland Optometric Association. Total ECP, which is backed by Toronto-based private equity fund manager Imperial Capital Group, was founded in 2017. The terms of its most recent transaction were not disclosed. The Bethesda Vision Care practice becomes the 39th office location under the Total ECP corporate umbrella, and the fifth office in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area, according to the announcement.

To Bring Customers In-Store, Get Them to Follow You on Social

By Staff
Tuesday, May 21, 2019 3:37 PM Building a social media following is not only a great way for brands to engage customers online, it can also help increase brick-and-mortar foot traffic, according to eMarketer. More than three-quarters of U.S. internet users said they would visit a brand's physical store after following it on social media, according to a February 2019 survey conducted by social media management platform Sprout Social. Loyal customers will typically follow a brand on social media as well as have an interest in visiting its retail location, likely contributing to the high figure. But that doesn’t mean social isn’t a great tool for engaging new, younger customers and getting them interested in visiting a physical store. Most U.S. consumers discover new brands the old-fashioned way: by receiving recommendations from friends.

Worldwide Barriers to Blockchain Adoption

By Staff
Tuesday, May 21, 2019 3:30 PM Yesterday’s Data Feed focused on the explosive growth that some analysts and researchers are predicting for the global blockchain market. Yet on a broader level, blockchain is still facing an uphill battle for acceptance. Nearly three in ten executives see blockchain regulations as the number one biggest barrier for the uptake of the technology’s full potential, the website Statista recently reported. About a quarter of respondents saw a lack of trust among users as the biggest barrier to overcome in blockchain adoption.

Independence Means Freedom and Quality for Upstate New York’s Frameology Optical

By Gwendolyn Plummer
Tuesday, May 21, 2019 11:20 AM When Stacy Daniel, LDO, opened Frameology Optical in December 2013, she knew she was doing something different. Located in Syracuse, a city with a population of just under 145,000 in upstate New York, opening up an independent optical office that focuses on handmade, artisan, European frames is “something people think doesn’t happen in Syracuse,” Daniel told Vision Monday. But five years later, Frameology is thriving. The staff is headed up by Daniel, who is a licensed contact lens fitter with a degree in optical dispensing from Erie Community College and a BBA in finance, as well as 25 years of work experience in private practice and the corporate world. Along with her staff, which includes Amanda Twohig, licensed optician, and Gina Wright, optical assistant, Daniel focuses on bringing handcrafted, European frames to Syracuse. It’s a passion project for Daniel, who combined two of her loves—frames and retail—to create Frameology.