BUSINESS: Retailers U.S. Vision Acquires Specs for Less, Marking Start of New Growth Phase Via Freestanding Locations By Staff Wednesday, October 27, 2021 12:27 AM BLACKWOOD, N.J.—U.S. Vision (USV), a leading retailer of optical products and services, has acquired Specs for Less, a Delaware-based freestanding optical chain. Details of the transaction, which closed in late August, were not disclosed. “With this acquisition, U.S.Vision has taken an important first step toward expanding our portfolio of optical businesses into the freestanding channel,” said Eric J. Bertrand, chairman, U.S.Vision. “We are excited to welcome the Specs for Less stores into our network of optical providers and look forward to completing a series of similar acquisitions in the near future.”Specs for Less has been in business in Delaware for over 20 years, providing excellent customer service at value prices, U.S. Vision's announcement noted. It has an extensive selection of branded frames and lenses to meet a variety of style preferences, prescription needs and budgets. “This new relationship provides tremendous benefits for both the Specs for Less clientele and its employee base,” said Ralph Rubeo, former vice president, Specs for Less.Added Michael Pepe, former president, Specs for Less, "From an expansive fashion-oriented frame selection to the addition of health care services, we believe U.S.Vision will bring significant value to our many constituents.” Rubeo and Pepe are the prior owners of Specs for Less and a U.S. Vision spokesperson told VMAIL that they are working on a temporary consulting basis to help transition the business. Specs for Less will continue to operate out of four Delaware-based locations in Wilmington, Middletown and Claymont. Richard Rice, regional vice president of retail for USV, will be overseeing the stores, the spokesperson said.U.S. Vision, Inc. is a retailer of optical products and services, with a national footprint of licensed and freestanding optical departments, now in in 377 retail locations across a variety of classes of trade including JC Penney, Meijer, Boscov’s and Optical Center/AAFES Exchange locations (and including the freestanding Specs for Less stores). These retail optical locations offer a wide selection of designer brands and private label prescription eyewear, contact lenses, sunglasses and accessories. Many locations also provide direct access to independent doctors of optometry, who perform comprehensive eye exams and prescribe eyeglasses and contact lenses. U.S.Vision has been a national provider of managed vision care benefits since 1991. As VMAIL previously reported in March, Lincoln Road Advisors acquired the holding company Refac Optical Group from its majority owner, Acon Investments.