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Alcon to License Google "Smart Lens" Technology PDF
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Friday, 18 July 2014

Google Smart LensNovartis announced that its eye care division Alcon has entered into an agreement with a division of Google Inc. to in-license its "smart lens" technology for all ocular medical uses. The agreement with Google[x], a team within Google that is devoted to finding new solutions to big global problems, provides Alcon with the opportunity to develop and commercialize Google's "smart lens" technology with the potential to transform eye care and further enhance Alcon's pipeline and global leadership in contact lenses and intraocular lenses. The transaction remains subject to anti-trust approvals.

"We are looking forward to working with Google to bring together their advanced technology and our extensive knowledge of biology to meet unmet medical needs," said Novartis CEO Joseph Jimenez. "This is a key step for us to go beyond the confines of traditional disease management, starting with the eye."

"Our dream is to use the latest technology in the miniaturization of electronics to help improve the quality of life for millions of people," said Sergey Brin, Co-Founder, Google. "We are very excited to work with Novartis to make this dream come true."

Under the agreement, Google[x] and Alcon will collaborate to develop a "smart lens" that has the potential to address ocular conditions. The smart lens technology involves non-invasive sensors, microchips and other miniaturized electronics which are embedded within contact lenses. Novartis' interest in this technology is currently focused in two areas:

  1. Helping diabetic patients manage their disease by providing a continuous, minimally invasive measurement of the body's glucose levels via a "smart contact lens" which is designed to measure tear fluid in the eye and connects wirelessly with a mobile device;
  2. For people living with presbyopia who can no longer read without glasses, the "smart lens" has the potential to provide accommodative vision correction to help restore the eye's natural autofocus on near objects in the form of an accommodative contact lens or intraocular lens as part of the refractive cataract treatment.
HOYA and i-Optics Partner in Global Optical Retail Contract PDF
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Thursday, 17 July 2014

HOYA has signed a multiple-year contract with Eye diagnostics company i-Optics to offer opticians the EasyScan 3 minute eye care test services for life-long eye health. i-Optics, the inventor of the Easyscan retinal imaging device and HOYA Vision Care signed a multiple-year contract to launch a unique collaboration in the optical retail market.

i-Optics developed the EasyScan to make medical grade images of the retina within three minutes and without any need of pupil dilation. This solution provides opticians the tools for early diagnosis of eye diseases and consumer education on disease prevention. The new market combination enables opticians worldwide to launch a new way of working which focuses on the preservation of eye-health by providing affordable eye exams and customised advice on best lens selection.

HOYA sees the direct connection of retinal imaging and protective lens treatments for protection against harmful UV rays and blue light emissions from digital devices. Besides that, it actively involves the customers in the purchasing process of their new pair of lenses and helps to raise awareness of the importance of good eye care and eye care solutions.

HOYA and i-Optics start their partnership this summer in the Netherlands, Germany, Spain, Austria, Italy and the USA. As of the beginning of 2015 both companies expect to expand their exclusive collaboration globally.

Contact Lens Manufacturer Sauflon Sold to The Cooper Companies PDF
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Thursday, 03 July 2014

The Cooper Companies Inc and the shareholders of Sauflon Pharmaceuticals Ltd have signed definitive agreements for the Cooper Companies Inc to acquire the entire share capital of Sauflon Pharmaceuticals. The transaction is subject to regulatory approval and is anticipated to complete prior to the end of fiscal 2014.

According to The Cooper Companies, the timing is perfect as the daily disposable category is the fastest growing modality globally and this transaction will enable CooperVision to be the premier contact lens manufacturer globally offering a full suite of daily disposables in hydrogel and silicone hydrogel materials. The transaction is further enhanced by Sauflon's wide portfolio of contact lens aftercare products complimenting both companies range of reusable lenses. The deal is fully supported by the Sauflon and CooperVision management teams, who are committed to seeing it through to a successful completion and integration. We anticipate many opportunities for both organisations and employees upon completion.

Sauflon's Managing Directors and senior leadership teams will stay on in the business after closing to assist with and manage the integration. Upon completion the combined group will offer a full range of contact lenses in every material, design and modality along with the most comprehensive range of contact lens aftercare products designed to enhance the contact lens wearers’ experience. 

ProDesign Acquires Second Eyewear Company in Short Time PDF
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Wednesday, 02 July 2014

ProDesign has signed a new purchase agreement with the owners of the widely recognised Danish company Inface. About two weeks ago we reported that ProDesign merged with French eyewear company Face à Face. In fact the merger has been an acquisition by ProDesign.

CEO of ProDesign, Dion Eriksen, disclosed that the acquisition of one of the industry's strongest designer brands Face à Face and the acquisition of Inface known for creating fashionable designer frames are complementary to the current product portfolio of ProDesign and will strengthen the market position of the company significantly. ProDesign is owned by the private equity fund Erhvervsinvest.

Dion Eriksen elaborated: "The mergers complement ProDesign's business model and support the strategy to grow organically and through acquisitions. Products from Face à Face and Inface fill out a void in the current product line. Furthermore, there is a large unexploited market potential for both companies. Consequently, we expect the growth rates for both companies to reach the same level as for the existing company. We also expect to benefit from the experience of each company which will contribute to the continous development of the Group."

Inface was founded in 1986 by optician Hans Laursen. Inface supplies frames at a price level which complements the ProDesign product range. Inface has also built up an impressive collection of sunglasses and a very strong children’s eyewear collection. The 2nd generation of the Laursen family, Mette and Thomas Laursen, will continue as Inface employees while Hans Laursen will remain on board as a Senior Consultant focusing on the development within Inface.

Essilor Reveals New Corporate Identity PDF
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Thursday, 26 June 2014

Essilor New LogoEssilor has revealed a new corporate identity to help promote the Group's activities in enhancing universal access to visual health and vision correction. According to Essilor, the new logo is just one part of a strong corporate brand platform to communicate more widely about the Group's mission and business strategy. It follows a program of international internal consultation to find the best way to define the characteristics of the Group and unite teams behind a common sense of purpose: improve lives by improving sight.

Essilor's new logo draws on the 165 year history of the Group - its origins and culture as a multi-local, pioneering and people-driven company. For our external audiences it will help to differentiate between the institutional initiatives from Essilor's commercial activities at a local level. Internally, it's a way to federate 55,000 people working in an international network of local subsidiaries and autonomous partners.

Emilio Pucci and Marcolin Sign Exclusive Eyewear License Agreement PDF
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Thursday, 19 June 2014

Marcolin Group and Emilio Pucci announce having reached the worldwide exclusive license agreement for the design, production and distribution of sunglasses and eyeglasses for Emilio Pucci, the timeless fashion brand synonymous with luxury, color, design and "joie de vivre", represented in its famous prints, innovative silhouette and fabrics that go beyond seasonal trends, for more than 60 years. The license, effective January 2015 with the launch of the first sunglasses collection, will have the duration of five years, renewable. The eyewear release will speak to an extremely feminine woman, embracing radiant and refined aesthetics and a luxury lifestyle in which creativity and minimalism will come together.

The Emilio Pucci brand for eyewear is currently licensed to Marchon.

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