Brisk sales in the millions have been reported by exhibitors at the recently held Vision-X Dubai 2012. The optical retail industry is advancing at a rapid pace as new technologies in optometry and opthalmics are being introduced, exhibitors and visitors observed at the event. Vision-X was the 13th edition of the Middle East’s only optical and ophthalmic exhibition held at Dubai World Trade Centre from May 8-10.
Over 120 exhibitors and 3,900 industry professionals from more than 63 countries attended the event. It proved to be an ideal platform for key industry participants to network, conduct business, keep abreast of optometry and ophthalmic trends, and attend workshops with the end goal of offering the highest quality products and services to consumers.
EGMA Optical Supplies concluded AED8 million in sales during Vision-X, a significant increase of 33% from last year, Poya Eghterafi, Executive Director of EGMA, revealed. “Since the launch of Vision-X Dubai, EGMA has been among the first exhibitors and today EGMA is the platinum sponsor of Vision-X and the largest exhibitor,” he said. Luxury and cutting edge technology characterised EGMA Optical Supplies’ offerings at Vision-X this year. EGMA launched the unique Mercedes-Benz Eyewear collection from Rodenstock and also introduced some of the most prestigious brands in the field of frames and sunglasses including Dunhill and Porsche Design at the event.
Ahmad Hamou, Sales Manager of the Optical Division at Al Amin Medical Instruments (Amico), estimated that the company achieved between AED1.5 and AED2 million in sales at Vision-X. “This year our main customers were from Kuwait and we have also concluded deals with Saudi Arabia and the UAE,” he added. Commenting on industry trends Hamou said the technology for equipment and machinery is moving in a direction from manual and low speed to digital and high speed. With the latest advancements, eyes can be tested digitally, quickly and accurately. “New technologies and quick service are appreciated by the customer when the optician can provide it. Now we integrate several functions into one machine, which allows accuracy and high efficiency,” he said.
François Sporrer, French Trade Commissioner and Director of UBIFRANCE Dubai/Doha said, “This year a dozen French companies have again participated in Vision-X Dubai at the French Pavilion, organised by UBIFRANCE-French Trade Commission and the French Federation, Lunettes de France. The event is an excellent opportunity for French eyewear businesses to meet with visitors coming from the Middle East and beyond. As such Vision-X is the most appropriate platform for French companies to build and extend their business contacts in the whole region.” Amar Bellal, Area Manager with French eyewear company Minima Lunettes Minamalistes said, “Vision-X has given exhibitors the best opportunities to present our products to current customers and also to find new customers. We have already made several sales at this event and we predict to double that next year,” said.
“The thing we have been focusing on the most is product enhancement and there are many new innovations that we bring to customers,” said Matthieu Ruatti, Marketing Director of Essilor Middle East Africa. The company announced its newest product Optifog, a brand new lens category in the optical retail industry, which prevents the formation of fog on glasses and will be particularly useful in the Middle East climate, Ruatti said. From a business perspective he commented that “this year at Vision-X was a great opportunity to enhance our business with current customers and strengthen the relationship while meeting new customers”.
“Vision-X has played a vital role in providing an exceptional opportunity for business growth this year. Participation and interest from buyers in the GCC region was particularly strong as seen by our exhibitors,” said Trixee Loh, Senior Vice President, Dubai World Trade Centre and organiser of Vision-X Dubai. “The event has given businesses an opportunity to tap into markets that they would otherwise not have access to including the GCC, Middle East, Africa and Asia,” she said. “Gauging from the feedback of our exhibitors and visitors at Vision-X this year, the event has once again given them an opportunity to learn about and share the latest technologies and trends in the ophthalmic and optical retail industry,” she added.
Vision-X also featured industry-specific workshops for ophthalmologists, optometrists and eye-care providers to gain insights in their field. This year Middle East Africa Vitreo-Retinal Society’s (MEAVRS) held a Clinical Uveitis Course to discuss critical information on the diagnosis and treatment of uveitis, an eye condition prevalent in this region. Workshops on Business Skills in the Optic Retail Industry were also held by Dr Aisha Natto, CEO of Eye to Eye Optics. The sessions gave participants effective skills in selling and dealing with customers in the optical retail business environment. Free workshops providing information on protecting consumer rights and eliminating counterfeit and fake products were held by the Department of Economic Development.