We can’t take a look back at Vision Monday’s most read stories of the year without considering VM’s Latest News features, the backbone of our VMAIL e-newsletter. Even against the backdrop of a year filled with rising inflation and fears of a recession the optical industry still got down to business despite the personal and business hurdles they faced due to an uncertain financial landscape. VM readers were especially interested in an ongoing problem in the eyecare industry concerning unsafe eye drops—the story “Dry Eye Foundation Reports Potentially Unsafe Eye Drops to FDA” occupies the top spot for 2023. Other stories in the most read category included features about business mergers and acquisitions, company reorganizations, a new location for Vision Expo East in 2025, and a perennial VM favorite with readers, VM’s Most Influential Women in Optical. Here’s a look at the 20 most read stories for 2023.

Dry Eye Foundation Reports Potentially Unsafe Eye Drops to FDA

POULSBO, Wash.—Dry Eye Foundation has identified more than 200 eye drops (62 brands) sold online that have potential safety issues. Of these, the majority are packaged exclusively for sale in a country other than the U.S. Read More


National Vision Announces Walmart Partnership Is Ending in 2024
DULUTH, Ga.—National Vision Holdings, Inc. announced that its partnership with Walmart Inc. will be ending in 2024. This includes supplying and operating Vision Centers in select Walmart stores, providing contact lens distribution and related services to Walmart and its affiliate, and arranging for the provision of optometric services at certain Walmart locations in California. Read More 

Vision Monday Announces Its ‘Most Influential Women in Optical’ for 2023

NEW YORK—Collaborative. Confident. Accomplished. Supportive. These are the characteristics that describe this year’s “class” of Vision Monday’s Most Influential Women. Today, Vision Monday is announcing its 2023 roster of 51 women of accomplishment, who were selected by VM’s editors from several hundreds of submissions. Read More

Optical Retailer Fielmann Group Enters U.S. Market, Acquires SVS Vision and Befitting.com, to Establish Fielmann USA

HAMBURG, Germany, and DETROIT—The Fielmann Group, a leading European eyewear provider, announced that it is entering the U.S. market with two complementary acquisitions. The company stated this is an important milestone in the internationalization that the German family business is pursuing with its "Vision 2025 growth strategy." Read More 

Keplr Vision Announces $80 Million in Additional Funding, Reorganizes Field Team, Adds Board Members

BLOOMINGTON, Ill.—Keplr Vision announced earlier this week that it has successfully closed $80 million in additional funding from existing investors including Imperial Capital and Golub. Details of the transaction were not disclosed. “We are extremely excited to announce this increased level of confidence and commitment from our investors,” said Tim Mayhew, CEO. Read More

VSP Vision's iCare Health Solutions Acquires Florida's Optical Outlets

MIAMI—iCare Health Solutions, a VSP Vision company, announced it has acquired Optical Outlets, one of Florida’s largest optometric retailers. Optical Outlets will continue to operate as it does today, but now as a part of iCare Health Solutions, the largest integrated eyecare provider in the state, the announcement said. Read More

ABB Optical Group Announces Leadership Changes

CORAL SPRINGS, Fla.—ABB Optical Group, a leading independent eyecare company, announced a series of organizational changes and additions to its executive and senior leadership team. The new customer-centric organizational structure will support the company’s mission to deliver an exceptional customer experience with enhanced support and industry leading solutions and services for its valued customers. Read More 

The Vision Council and RX Announce That Vision Expo East Will Move Permanently to Orlando in 2025

ALEXANDRIA, Va.—After 38 years in New York City, Vision Expo East will permanently relocate to Orlando, Florida for the February 19–22, 2025 show, The Vision Council and RX, co-owners of Vision Expo, announced today. Vision Expo East’s final show in New York, scheduled for March 14–17, 2024, will celebrate and commemorate nearly four decades of achievement and growth within the o
ptical industry. Read More

Safilo Announces New Strategic Organization Executives for North America and Its Sports Division

PADUA, Italy—Safilo Group has announced "an evolution of its organization design, aimed to support the implementation of the Group’s strategic plan for continued business development in the core North American market, and the acceleration of its business in the sport channel." The company said Francesco Rinaldi Ceroni has been named president of Safilo's global sport division. Read More

AOA and Other OD Groups Gear Up to Fight Several States' Proposed Legislation to Block or Limit the Designation of 'Doctor of Optometry' as Other U.S. Scope Battles Continue

NEW YORK—The American Optometric Association along with other state associations, organizations and OD groups are gearing up to actively fight new legislation, proposed in some states, which would block, limit or discourage doctors of optometry from being referenced as "doctors." In recent weeks, the AOA reported that such legislation has been introduced in Florida, Connecticut and Texas. Read More

EyeCare Partners' CEO David A. Clark Leaves the Company, Benjamin Breier Named Interim

CEO ST. LOUIS—EyeCare Partners, LLC, the leading network of clinically integrated eyecare, and one of the largest provider groups in the U.S., announced that David A. Clark, who has served as chief executive officer since 2021, has left the organization. Benjamin Breier will serve as interim CEO and the search for a new CEO is in process. Read More

IDOC and Three Rivers Optical Combine to Form Company Dedicated to Serving Independent Eyecare Practices

NORWALK, Conn.—Two renowned industry leaders, IDOC, the largest independent optometric alliance, and Three Rivers Optical, a leading independent optical laboratory, have combined “to bring an unmatched suite of practice enhancement and lab services to eyecare professionals,” the announcement said. The two companies, with a 75-plus year combined history of serving optometry, have a shared mission of continuing the growth and success of independent eyecare practices. Read More 

Kathleen Steele Named President of VSP Ventures

RANCHO CORDOVA, Calif.—VSP Vision announced that Kathleen Steele has been named president of VSP Ventures. In the role, Steele will lead the company’s business unit that provides care-focused choices for doctors of optometry looking for practice transition options. She will report to Kate Renwick-Espinosa, president of VSP Vision Care.
Read More 

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis Vetoes Bill That Would Have Banned Optometrists From Calling Themselves Doctors or Physicians

TALLAHASSEE, Fla.—Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis vetoed a bill today that would have prevented optometrists from calling themselves “physicians” or “doctors” in interactions with patients or advertisements. The governor vetoed Senate Bill (SB) 230. DeSantis’ official veto message does not explain why he vetoed either bill. Read More

Blue Point Announces Investment in Europa Eyewear to Support the Growth and Development of a New Platform

CHICAGO—Europa Eyewear, a family-owned designer and manufacturer of proprietary eyewear frames, is announcing its partnership with Blue Point Capital Partners, a Midwest investment firm. According to that announcement, "Blue Point Capital has made a meaningful investment in Europa to fuel its growth and expansion." Read More

Walmart Is Raising Wages and Investing in Careers for More Than 7,000 Opticians and Pharmacists

BENTONVILLE, Ark.—As part of what it described as "Our ongoing effort to recognize the great work of our health and wellness associates while investing for the future," Walmart said it will be investing in the careers, training and in some cases, licensing for 4,000 opticians and 3,700 pharmacists. Read More

Jim McGrann Appointed CEO and David Spear Named President and Chief Strategy Officer of Advancing Eyecare in Leadership Transition

JACKSONVILLE, Fla.—Advancing Eyecare, a leading North America provider of ophthalmic instruments, announced the appointments of Jim McGrann as chief executive officer and David Spear as president and chief strategy officer, both effective immediately, as the company positions itself for its next phase of growth. Read More

Zenni Optical Expands Leadership Team and Forms New B2B Platform, Zenni Business, to Offer a Suite of Eyecare Solutions

NOVATO, Calif.—As Zenni Optical embarks on its next 20 years, one of the world’s leading online eyewear retailers, which marked its 20th anniversary in May of this year, reports that it continues to build a team that can drive innovation and growth and create new ways to bring eyewear and eyecare to customers and businesses. Zenni has also added several new members to its leadership team. Read More

Healthy Vision Association, NAVCP, VSP Insurance and Others File Suit Against State of Texas Following Passage of State Law HB 1696

NEW YORK—Four law firms, on behalf of clients including the Healthy Vision Association, National Association of Vision Care Plans (NAVCP), VSP Insurance Company, Visionworks and others have filed suit against the state of Texas following its passage of state law HB 1696. The law relates to the relationship between managed care plans and optometrists and therapeutic optometrists. Read More

EssilorLuxottica to Enter Hearing Solutions Category With Acquisition of Israel's Nuance

CHARENTON-Le-PONT—EssilorLuxottica announced it has made a strategic decision to expand into the hearing solutions market. It will do this with "a new disruptive technology at the intersection of sight and sound," a dedicated Super Audio team and in-house R&D resources enabled by its 100 percent acquisition of Israeli start-up Nuance. Read More