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Luxottica Extends Prada Eyewear License PDF
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Monday, 18 May 2015

Luxottica Group and Prada s.p.a. have announced the renewal of an exclusive license agreement for the design, production and worldwide distribution of prescription frames and sunglasses under the Prada and Miu Miu brands. The 10-year agreement will extend through December 31, 2025.

Adil Khan, Luxottica’s CEO of Markets, commented: “We are extremely proud of our collaboration with Prada Group and the beautiful and innovative frames we are creating together. Prada and Miu Miu are truly global and iconic brands and we look forward to continuing our successful partnership in the years ahead”.

Patrizio Bertelli, Prada Group’s CEO, said: “We are very pleased to announce the renewal of our co-operation with Luxottica which, thanks to its leadership in the international markets, is the ideal partner to boost our brands’ identities.”

Hoya Reports Record Annual Sales and Profit PDF
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Friday, 15 May 2015

HOYA Corporation has announced financial results for the fourth quarter and full‐year ended March 31, 2015. During the quarter, revenues increased by 10.6% to 127,440 million yen compared with the same period last year. Pre‐tax profit for the quarter was 25,309 million yen, while profit for this quarter was 18,513 million yen, both of which marked gains of 27.2% and 45.1%, respectively.

In Hoya's Life Care segment, sales significantly increased in the eyeglass lens business through stronger sales in overseas markets and inclusion of Seiko Optical Products, a sales company of SEIKO eye wear, as a consolidated subsidiary. The contact lens retail business posted year‐on‐year sales decline due to the rebound reduction from the last‐minute demand in March the previous year before the consumption tax hike. Most of the businesses, excluding the endoscope business, performed quite well. Together with the weaker yen, the revenue posted an increase year‐on‐year.

"Today we announced a new share repurchase program with a maximum of 10 million shares and ¥45 billion. Our policy to allocate resources in M&A opportunities and to use excess cash to reward shareholders continues,” said Hiroshi Suzuki, chief executive officer of HOYA. “Decline in profit for the Life Care segment was mainly due to influence of currency exchange. Sales for eyeglass lens business increased by 20% thanks to healthy growth in Europe and US. I also expect a new intraocular lens product launched this April to become a hit because of its unique and excellent quality.”

Bausch + Lomb Reports Resistance Patterns for Key Ocular Pathogens PDF
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Monday, 11 May 2015

Bausch + Lomb has announced the results from the sixth consecutive year of the ARMOR (Antibiotic Resistance Monitoring in Ocular MicrooRganisms) surveillance study in the United States as presented at the 2015 Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) Annual Meeting in Denver, Colorado. Initiated in 2009, ARMOR is the only multi-center, national survey of antibiotic resistance patterns specific to eye care.

In the ARVO presentation, researchers reported year-over-year comparisons of susceptibility rates based on 2013 data on 496 bacterial isolates collected from 22 participating sites and preliminary 2014 data on 141 isolates collected from 7 participating sites. The survey included all of the organisms most frequently implicated in serious bacterial eye infections, including Streptococcus pneumoniae, Staphylococcus aureus, coagulase-negative staphylococci (CoNS), Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Haemophilus influenzae.

Similar to previous years, high levels of resistance (full resistance and intermediate resistance) were observed. Approximately one in two S. pneumoniae isolates were resistant to penicillin, and two in five were resistant to azithromycin. During this period, tobramycin resistance among CoNS increased, while resistance rates for azithromycin remained stable. All H. influenzae isolates were susceptible to all drugs tested, with few exceptions. Methicillin resistance among staphylococci remains high with one in four S. aureus and one in two CoNS (eg S. epidermidis) isolates resistant. Many methicillin resistant staphylococci were multi-drug resistant.

"As the ARMOR survey makes clear, antibiotic resistance by significant ocular pathogens is a moving target," said Penny A. Asbell, M.D., lead ARMOR study author, professor of Ophthalmology at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, and director of the Cornea Service and Refractive Surgery Center at Mount Sinai Hospital. "This ongoing surveillance effort is the only epidemiological data available to help eye care providers maintain the effectiveness of ocular infection control by tracking actual susceptibility rates for commonly used antibiotics. The ability to identify resistance trends over time is particularly useful for guiding treatment decisions for ocular infections." 

Graphic Tactile Display For Blind People Developed PDF
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Thursday, 07 May 2015

Tactile Display TactisplaySouth Korean company Tactisplay Corp. has developed a prototype of graphic tactile display for the blind people. This device has individually actuated 3,072 cells configured in 64 column with 48 rows. The system is able to show graphical information as raised tactile dots.

It contains an internal image processing engine which summarizes the image and extracts crucial graphic information for the display. When the device is connected to USB camera, the image captured is displayed in the tactile dot array after image processing. On the other hand, when the device is connected to a PC or notebook with an ethernet cable then the monitor screen image is automatically transferred to the device for the blind person to touch and feel what is showing.

This solution can be used as a mechanical eye for blind people. There is no dangerous surgical operation required. The user only needs to carry a bag containing the device slung over the shoulder and clip the USB camera to his/her eyeglasses to see the view.

The solution, called TACTISPLAY Walk, is designed to be portable and to be used outdoors. It contains a large battery which enables the device to operate 10 hours continuously. The size is about the size of an A4 paper and its thickess is 53mm (about two inches). Weight is 2.5kg. Pricing is not confirmed but it is expected to retail for under US$7,000. 

Luxottica Working on New Version of Google Glass PDF
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Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Google Glass 2According to recent reports in the Wall Street Journal and Forbes, Luxottica is working on a new version of Google Glass.

Luxottica's CEO Massimo Vian told shareholders at the recent company's general meeting that its partnership with Google to build the next iteration of Glass is moving forward and will be available soon. Google's Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt told The Wall Street Journal that Google Glass has been put under the leadership of Tony Fadell, head of Google's Nest connected home division, in order to make it ready for consumers.

Luxottica also confirmed that it is going ahead with a partnership with Intel, and that a first product will be out between February and March next year.

Essilor Reports Strong First Quarter 2015 PDF
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Friday, 24 April 2015

Essilor International has announced that consolidated revenue for the first quarter of 2015 totaled €1,659 million, representing an increase of 12.7% excluding the currency effect. Hubert Sagnières, Chairman and CEO of Essilor, said: "This first-quarter 2015 performance confirms our strong growth potential, which is benefiting from the broadening of our playing field and the extension of our geographical reach to meet the multiple eyesight correction and visual protection needs around the world. Excluding Japan, mature markets picked up pace while fast-growing markets remained vibrant despite the lackluster economic environment in certain countries. Business momentum should continue to accelerate throughout the year on the back of the ramp-up of the media campaigns and recent contract wins for our different businesses, as well as the contribution of new local partnerships. That is why we are confident that our full-year 2015 targets will be met."

The company also reported that Australia enjoyed strong sales impetus.

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