Michael Pecora is President and CEO of Unilens Vision Inc., a company that has a history of bringing innovative specialty contact lens products to market. Since 1994, his vision of exclusively providing independent eyecare practitioners with state-of-the-art solutions for presbyopia and astigmatism has resulted in the recent launch of the C-VUE Advanced® HydraVUE™, a silicone hydrogel custom lens for monthly replacement. Prior to joining Unilens Vision in 1994, Michael held key positions with leading Fortune 500 companies. Here, Michael talks about how Unilens’ specialty lens design technology benefits independent optometric practices.
Eric L. Bran: Can you discuss any new initiatives that the company is working on?
Michael Pecora: As an industry leader in the ongoing development of multifocal lens design technology, Unilens continues to focus its efforts on the next generation of presbyopic lens designs.
One of our highest priorities is the development and launch of a new silicone hydrogel disposable multifocal that embodies our C-VUE Advanced Multifocal technology.
EB:How is Unilens currently helping today’s optometrists to accommodate the growing presbyopic market?
MP: Unilens is providing optometrists with cutting-edge technology to meet their patients’ presbyopic needs. Our fitting consultants are available to guide practitioners through the available multifocal and toric multifocal options, as well as provide expert consultation for difficult fits. And, since our C-VUE brands are only available through independent eyecare practitioners, Unilens is continuing with its time honored tradition of contributing to the patient retention and practice profitability of independent optometry while offering some of the best presbyopic visual patient outcomes available in the industry today. EB: What has the response been for the C-VUE Advanced HydraVUE lens since its launch last year?
MP: The industry response to our C-VUE Advanced HydraVUE, one of the very first silicone hydrogel custom contact lenses designed for monthly replacement, has been extremely favorable. In fact, our custom lens category, driven by our C-VUE Advanced HydraVUE has grown by over 40% in the last year. I attribute the success of the HydraVUE to our patented advanced lens designs coupled with the latest generation of silicone hydrogel material that meets the specialty requirements of independent practitioners.
EB: What about the Lombart Division? What role does this division have in Unilens?
MP: The Unilens Lombart Division was established to provide replacement lenses for many of the conventional lenses that have been discontinued in recent years. This gives practitioners the ability to continue to keep their patients in their preferred lens at a reasonable price. For instance, the Softcon EW and Aquaflex brands are still available for independent eyecare practitioners to order through our Lombart Division.
EB: What was the reasoning behind Unilens joining the VisionWeb supplier network last year?
MP: The Unilens partnership with VisionWeb now provides our customers with an efficient and convenient portal to order our C-VUE disposable contact lenses along with thousands of other ophthalmic products from one convenient online location.
EB: What does the future of specialty contact lenses look like?
MP: I believe the specialty contact lens market will continue to escalate over the next decade due to new, innovative, and improved multifocal designs that support the fast- growing prespyopic population. Furthermore, the toric multifocal market is undeveloped and in its infancy, which I predict will achieve rapid growth as more astigmatic patients are educated on new multifocal designs such as the C-VUE Advanced series of Toric Multifocal lenses.