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Eyebobs Bolsters Leadership Team

The goal is to support rapid growth and digital innovation.

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(PRESS RELEASE) MINNEAPOLIS — Eyebobs, the Minneapolis-based eyewear brand, welcomes a new leadership team across marketing, sales and information technology. The strategic hires on the executive and marketing teams will oversee eyebobs’ rapid retail expansion as well as manage brand growth in direct-to-consumer channels and key accounts through strategic campaign development and execution.

Leading the addition of new talent is Vice President of Marketing Joe Prebich. Prebich will oversee all marketing, brand and product operations in North America, and joins eyebobs in its Minneapolis, Minnesota, headquarters. Prebich comes to eyebobs with extensive experience as a retail-driven brand marketer, effectively leading strategic e-commerce campaigns and elevating the digital and brick-and-mortar presence of several notable brands including Oakley, Red Bull and Fjällräven. As vice president of brand at Fjällräven, he developed and executed strategic marketing solutions and aided in the brand’s extensive growth through core messaging and brand development.

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The brand also announces the addition of Andy Swope, vice president of IT. Swope comes to eyebobs with more than two decades of experience creating, leading and executing digital marketing and e-commerce campaigns in the financial services and speciality retail landscapes. He has served in senior leadership roles at Schwans, Gander Mountain, Asset Marketing Services, and Wells Fargo where he played a significant role in leading strategic innovation opportunities and digital marketing efforts.

“ The caliber of talent joining our executive and marketing teams is invaluable as we drive for aggressive growth,” says Mike Hollenstein, CEO of eyebobs. “With Joe’s deep experience in executing creative marketing strategy, and Andy’s expertise in disrupting digital landscapes, we are positioned for success while we grow our number of retail doors and help our teams scale to market demands in 2019.”

The leadership expansion comes as eyebobs restructures its internal marketing and sales teams with the addition of Megan McGough as director of marketing and sales operations, and Sarah Lindberg as director of sales. McGough joins eyebobs with nearly a decade of marketing experience at Target Corp., Mammut Sports Group and Fjällräven North America. She will closely support the brand in large-scale marketing plans, while providing ground-level support at eyebobs retail openings, trade shows, and brand events.

Lindberg brings a wealth of startup drive and corporate scale to the sales process. Leading the wholesale team, Lindberg will focus on specialty retail, optical, and key accounts, all essential components to eyebobs brand success.

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“I am thrilled to join a brand that has built success by valuing authenticity and diversity for nearly 20 years,” says Prebich. “With the marketing and sales expertise of Megan and Sara on board, we are excited to begin launching new retail locations across the nation. As eyebobs presence grows, those values will remain at the core of our efforts. We’re eager to focus on enhancing the brand’s legendary model of service in our brand centers and improving our fans’ digital experience in order to help frame each person uniquely.”

The restructuring at eyebobs coincides with the brand’s growing presence across the U.S. After opening three brand stores in the past 18 months, eyebobs is planning for 12 new brand centers nationwide. Three of the four store openings will occur in a one-month span during spring 2019 in Boston, Denver, and Washington, DC.

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Press Releases

Academy 2019 Orlando and 3rd World Congress of Optometry Education Program Announced

This joint meeting will bring global optometry together to offer a wide array of clinically relevant CE courses and cutting-edge research in the clinical and vision sciences.

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(PRESS RELEASE)ORLANDO and ST. LOUIS – The World Council of Optometry and the American Academy of Optometry have partnered to present an impressive education program taking place at Academy 2019 Orlando and the 3rd World Congress of Optometry, October 23-27, 2019. This joint meeting will bring global optometry together to offer a wide array of clinically relevant CE courses and cutting-edge research in the clinical and vision sciences. Attendees from around the globe can choose from over 450 hours of lectures and workshops, Section and Special Interest Group (SIG) symposia, hundreds of scientific papers and posters, an expansive exhibit hall, and several memorable social events featuring international optometry.

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This year’s Plenary Session from 10 AM – 12 Noon on Wednesday, October 23 is titled, “Today’s Research, Tomorrow’s Practice: WHO World Report on Vision, Opportunities for Optometry to Make an Impact,” and will discuss the World Report on Vision on the distribution of eye disease and blindness across the globe and the disease burden these eye conditions pose on nations and regions. Additionally, the human resource requirements of eyecare providers needed to address this public health crisis will be covered. Optometric representatives, specifically the session speakers, played an instrumental role in developing the report. They will discuss the findings and their implications for optometry internationally and for North America respectively. The keynote speaker from WHO will give attendees an overview of the organization’s efforts to tackle the extensive disease and blindness burdens on society throughout the world and where optometry fits into this effort. Speakers include Kovin Naidoo, OD, PhD, FAAO, Sandra Block, OD, MPH, FAAO, and a speaker from the World Health Organization.

The Monroe J. Hirsch Research Symposium is titled, “Gene Therapy for Ocular and Neurologic Disorders.” Contemporary issues in gene therapy will be discussed including Leber’s Congenital Amaurosis, animal models of glaucoma, and Leber’s Hereditary Optic Neuropathy. Speakers will include Stephen Russell, MD, Abbott Clark, PhD, and Byron Lam, MD.

Ezell Fellows Present is a symposium where three investigators at different stages of their careers, who were supported early on through the Foundation’s Ezell Fellowships, present their research. This year marks the 10th anniversary of the symposium and is titled, “Public Health / Epidemiology Potpourri.” Included in this session will be discussions on anterior segment infectious eye disease and US national health datasets used to assess vision impairment. Speakers will be Nicole Carnt, BOptom, PhD, FAAO, Charlotte Joslin, OD, PhD, FAAO, and Dean VanNasdale, OD, PhD, FAAO.

The World Council of Optometry President’s Forum is titled, “Optometry’s Role in Addressing the Changing Face of Technology, Public Health and Clinical care.” This invitation-only event provides a platform wherein the highest level of decision makers and key partners of our profession come together to discuss the current development of optometry and the desired impact that it envisages in the broader health agenda across the world.

The Global Summit on Optometric Education, co-sponsored by the World Council of Optometry, American Academy of Optometry, and the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry, will provide educators from optometric educational programs from around the globe the opportunity to share education philosophies/teaching methods and to discuss challenges facing institutions.

The meeting will take place at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida. Registration and housing open on May 6, 2019. For more information, visit www.aaopt.org/2019 or www.worldcongressofoptometry.org.

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Press Releases

APS Members Brief Congressional Offices on Concerns Regarding Robocalls & Substitution of Contact Lenses

They visited nearly a dozen congressional offices.

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(PRESS RELEASE) WASHINGTON – Members of the Health Care Alliance for Patient Safety (APS) visited nearly a dozen congressional offices. During these meetings, APS advocates briefed Members of Congress and their staffs on problems that vision care patients face including online sellers’ problematic use of robocalls and the medical dangers and safety threats posed by the substitution of lenses that have not been prescribed to a patient.

The 2004 Fairness to Contact Lens Consumers Act requires that all third-party sellers must verify prescriptions with an eye doctor and fill the prescription as written. However, the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) Contact Lens Rule allows verification to be done via robocalls. Oftentimes, information relayed in these robocalls is garbled or do not align with a patient’s chart—making it difficult, or even impossible, to correctly identify the patient and proper prescription.

More than 45 million Americans rely on contact lenses – U.S. Food and Drug Administration Class II and Class III regulated medical devices – for safe and effective vision correction. Contact lenses are more complex than they appear, having differing shapes, strengths, and water contents. There are no generics. Substitution of lenses not as prescribed by the patient’s doctor can lead to serious health complications, including infections and other sight-threatening conditions, such as corneal edema, ulcers, and neovascularization.

Dr. Deanna Alexander, chairwoman of the Health Care Alliance for Patient Safety, said, “Access to contact lenses should be fair and safe for patients while preserving the doctor-patient relationship, just as Congress intended. The Health Care Alliance for Patient Safety is committed to working with lawmakers and regulators to address the FTC Contact Lens Rule verification loophole that puts patients’ eye health and safety at risk.”

The Health Care Alliance for Patient Safety has made it a priority to close loopholes within the existing verification process and prevent the dangerous sale of counterfeit lenses and the substitution of lenses to reduce the risk of preventable vision loss.

The Alliance was founded in 2018 to advocate for patient safety and to protect and defend the doctor-patient relationship – the essential foundation of personalized health care decision making. For more information, please visit www.PatientSafetyToday.com.

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Press Releases

Marchon and ABG Announce License Renewals for Nautica and Nine West Eyewear

They ‘provide fashion eyewear to both men and women with a recognizable and modern approach.’

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(PRESS RELEASE) NEW YORK – Marchon Eyewear Inc. and Authentic Brands Group, owner of a global portfolio of lifestyle entertainment brands, announced the long-term renewals of the existing global eyewear licensing agreements for the Nautica and Nine West brands, respectively.

The alliance between the two companies is for the exclusive worldwide design, development, production and distribution of optical eyewear and sunglasses for Nautica, and optical eyewear and prescription sunglasses for Nine West.

“Given their leadership in the eyewear space, we are pleased to continue our partnership with Marchon on the expansion of Nautica and Nine West eyewear. Both of these brands coupled with Marchon’s expertise provide fashion eyewear to both men and women with a recognizable and modern approach,” said Jarrod Weber, group president of Lifestyle at ABG.

“Nautica and Nine West are both iconic American brands that hold an important place in consumers’ hearts and minds. Both have been long term brands for Marchon and will continue to represent a core portion of our Lifestyle portfolio,” said Nicola Zotta, CEO and president of Marchon Eyewear. “We appreciate that ABG has provided a clear vision and thoughtful direction for each brand and we are honored to renew our partnership so as to strategically grow these brands within the eyewear category.”

Retail distribution for both brands is strong, with Nautica eyewear collections sold worldwide in optical retailers, department and specialty stores, as well as through travel retail, nautica.com and other key online accounts. Nine West eyewear is sold around the world in upscale optical chains and specialty retailers, and is also available via individual eyecare professionals.

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