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The Retail Bulletin, the complete retail news resource

Glasses Direct owner acquires LensOn

Thursday December 13th 2012

Prescription Eyewear Limited, the owner of Glasses Direct, has announced that it has acquired the Nordic online contact lenses retailer LensOn as it looks to grow its portfolio of brands.

The group said the deal will expand its geographical footprint across Europe, where more than 60% of sales now come from outside its home market in the UK.

LensOn operates local language sites across Sweden, Norway, Finland, Denmark,
the Netherlands, Germany, France and the UK. Founders Kim Persson and Johan Bergenheim will continue to manage the LensOn business and drive growth for the whole group in the Nordic region.

PEL CEO Kevin Cornils said: "LensOn has established itself as a strong player across the Nordic region and we look forward to working with them to grow their business not only into new European markets, but also to complement their current contact lens offering with prescription glasses and sunglasses.  

"The deal also solidifies PEL’s position as the clear market leader in the fast-growing European online eyewear category and positions us well to take advantage of the significant shift we’re seeing as consumers increasingly choose the internet for the choice, value and convenience that it offers."
 
Persson added: "PEL and its businesses will be a great partner for us as we look to continue our rapid growth across the Nordic markets and beyond.  Their expertise and leading position in selling glasses and sunglasses online will enable us to greatly accelerate our efforts in those markets and provide a full-service offering to our customers.  We also look forward to working with them to extend our business into the UK and continental European markets including Germany and France where the opportunity is significant."   

PEL, which also owns MyOptique.com and SunglassesShop.com, said it has identified a €3 to €4 billion opportunity in the European optical market over the next three to five years. The group said it will generate nearly £30 million of gross retail sales in 2012.