There is a golden opportunity to increase market share similar to the Luxottica situation several years ago. Essilor and Hoya have forced independents to choose labs based on authorized distribution of proprietary products due to ownership of wholesale labs by Essilor and Hoya. Luxottica did a similar transaction with the purchase of Lenscrafters. Most independents stopped carrying Luxottica product and switched to other frame wholesalers. Sola has introduced the Sola Max product and even sent a letter to all independents saying the Sola Max is priced like a CR 39. Upon calling numerous wholesale labs, the Sola Max is being priced as a hi index lens. WAKE UP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! PRICE THE LENS TO COMPETE AGAINST VARILUX AND HOYA AND GET THE ENORMOUS POTENTIAL CONVERSION NOW WHILE THE INDEPENDENTS ARE READY TO SWITCH. WE DO NOT LIKE BEING TOLD WHERE TO BUY PRODUCTS.
SolaMax states: "Most independents stopped carrying Luxottica product and switched to other frame wholesalers."
While SOL has fallen to 5 from 40, LUX has risen from 9 to 23. There certainly has been some frustration re LUX and Lenscrafters and the Essilor and now Hoya move into the lab business may present opportunities for SOL, but the LUX and Essilor business models cannot be so swiftly set aside as your comments seem to do.
You missed my point. I am not arguing against the business model of Luxottica or Hoya in trying to gain market share. How much further could Luxottica have risen if they had held on to the private market? I am simply saying that Sola has an opportunity that they have not exploited by appealing to those individual companies that enjoy freemdom of choice. By the way, Luxottica really misses the independent market. I met with the Vice President in my office as he tried to convince me to start buying his product again and also to sign on to the Luxottica managed care plan.