The spectacular power of Big Lens | The long read | News | The Guardian


34 bookmarks. First posted by aebraddy 10 weeks ago.


Over the last generation, just two companies have risen above all the rest to dominate the industry. The lenses in my glasses – and yours too, most likely – are made by Essilor, a French multinational that controls almost half of the world’s prescription lens business and has acquired more than 250 other companies in the past 20 years.

There is a good chance, meanwhile, that your frames are made by Luxottica, an Italian company with an unparalleled combination of factories, designer labels and retail outlets. Luxottica pioneered the use of luxury brands in the optical business, and one of the many powerful functions of names such as Ray-Ban (which is owned by Luxottica) or Vogue (which is owned by Luxottica) or Prada (whose glasses are made by Luxottica) or Oliver Peoples (which is owned by Luxottica) or high-street outlets such as LensCrafters, the largest optical retailer in the US (which is owned by Luxottica), or John Lewis Opticians in the UK (which is run by Luxottica), or Sunglass Hut (which is owned by Luxottica) is to make the marketplace feel more varied than it actually is.

Between them, Essilor and Luxottica play a central, intimate role in the lives of a remarkable number of people. Around 1.4 billion of us rely on their products to drive to work, read on the beach, follow the whiteboard in biology lessons, type text messages to our grandchildren, land aircraft, watch old movies, write dissertations and glance across restaurants, hoping to look slightly more intelligent and interesting than we actually are. Last year, the two companies had a combined customer base that is somewhere between Apple’s and Facebook’s, but with none of the hassle and scrutiny of being as well known.
technology 
5 weeks ago by W6AZ
On the Italian company that makes a large proportion of the world's glasses frames merging with the French company that makes a large proportion of the world's glasses lenses. Fascinating. (via @antimega)
glasses  via:antimega  business  samknight 
8 weeks ago by philgyford
There is a good chance, meanwhile, that your frames are made by Luxottica, an Italian company with an unparalleled combination of factories, designer labels and retail outlets. Luxottica pioneered the use of luxury brands in the optical business, and one of the many powerful functions of names such as Ray-Ban (which is owned by Luxottica) or Vogue (which is owned by Luxottica) or Prada (whose glasses are made by Luxottica) or Oliver Peoples (which is owned by Luxottica) or high-street outlets such as LensCrafters, the largest optical retailer in the US (which is owned by Luxottica), or John Lewis Opticians in the UK (which is run by Luxottica), or Sunglass Hut (which is owned by Luxottica) is to make the marketplace feel more varied than it actually is.
capitalism  healthcare  history  business  longread 
9 weeks ago by conner
I have Nikon lenses in my glasses. Just saying.
9 weeks ago by miss_s_b
How one giant company will dominate the way the whole world sees.
vision 
9 weeks ago by andyhuey
The long read: How one giant company will dominate the way the whole world sees
9 weeks ago by brianyang
How one giant company will dominate the way the whole world sees. By If you have been wearing glasses for years, like me, it can be surprising to discover that you perceive the world thanks to a few giant companies that you have never heard of. via Pocket
IFTTT  Pocket  feedly 
9 weeks ago by schmitz
How one giant company will dominate the way the whole world sees. By If you have been wearing glasses for years, like me, it can be surprising to discover that you perceive the world thanks to a few giant companies that you have never heard of. via Pocket
IFTTT  Pocket 
9 weeks ago by kubia
How one giant company will dominate the way the whole world sees. By Sam Knight
Luxottica  Essilor  EssilorLuxottica  glasses  history  strategy  profile  review  merger  Guardian  2018 
9 weeks ago by inspiral
How one giant company will dominate the way the whole world sees. By If you have been wearing glasses for years, like me, it can be surprising to discover that you perceive the world thanks to a few giant companies that you have never heard of.
article 
9 weeks ago by mud
"The spectacular power of Big Lens" (by , )
from twitter_favs
9 weeks ago by fourstar
The long read: How one giant company will dominate the way the whole world sees
10 weeks ago by thenerdscribe
How one giant company will dominate the way the whole world sees. By If you have been wearing glasses for years, like me, it can be surprising to discover that you perceive the world thanks to a few giant companies that you have never heard of. via Pocket
IFTTT  Pocket  instapaper 
10 weeks ago by drewcaldwell
How one giant company will dominate the way the whole world sees. By If you have been wearing glasses for years, like me, it can be surprising to discover that you perceive the world thanks to a few giant companies that you have never heard of. via Pocket
IFTTT  Pocket  hansdorsch  twitter 
10 weeks ago by hansdorsch