A song from the 70’s entitled ‘I Can See Clearly Now’ could very well be the philosophy behind the many innovative creations of Transitions Optical Inc. In simple terms, Transitions lenses adapt to the perfect shade so its wearer will be able to see with just the right amount of light. Transitions Optical Inc Asia Pacific general manager Stuart Cannon tells UNRESERVED what the brand’s goals are as well as what we can expect to live life well lit.
Could you share with us your experience in helming the brand?
I have worked at Transitions Optical for over 11 years and was appointed Asia Pacific general manager in July 2014. I am privileged to be managing one of the world’s most recognized optical brands in one of the fastest growing regions in the world. There are large growth opportunities for photochromic (the ability to change colour in response to light) lenses and with Transitions being a leading brand in terms of technology and innovation – as well as a team of dedicated and passionate people- I am confident that consumers will be satisfied with the brand’s lenses.
Could you tell us the secret to Transitions Optical Inc’s success? What the industry challenges that you face and how do you tackle it?
Transitions is a leader in photochromic technology and the only photochromic supplier with a family of brands with different technology to match the lifestyle needs of its different consumers. Our key success drivers are:
- Our continual investment in R&D, with over 80 scientists who constantly work on product innovation and technology improvements for optimum wearer experience.
- Our close relationships with key optical lens suppliers, ensuring that a wide range of Transitions lenses are available for eye care professionals to offer their patients. We continue to assist with professional education to enable eye care professionals to prescribe our products with confidence.
- Our brand building, as Transitions has been successful in building the most recognized consumer brand in prescription eyewear and we do that with confidence as we offer leadership in technology, distribution and service. Our consumers ask for Transitions by name as they recognize the value in the brand and product. Our research studies have shown that 9 out of 10 people who try Transitions lenses love them, and 94 percent are repeat users.
We continue to work on harnessing our strengths in our quest to enable healthy vision for our wearers so they can see life in the best life.
Could you tell us more about Transitions Signature lenses? What are the unique qualities that set it apart from other products?
Launched last year, Transitions Signature lenses are our most adaptive responsive lenses. It is fully clear indoors and at night, and more reactive to UV and indirect light in various conditions- sunny, cloudy and everything in between. We use our patented proprietary technologies and breakthrough testing methodologies to inform our product developments, and specifically for Transitions Signature lenses, the key differentiating quality comes from our exclusive Chromea7 photochromic technology, a proprietary dye formulation that enables this responsiveness and fast fade back speed. We also developed a breakthrough testing methodology called Life360 with Transitions Signature lenses, where we took our testing beyond the traditional confines of the lab and into the real world in over 200 real life conditions representing over 1,000 scenarios that wearers experience around the world.
How has the response been thus far to the new lenses?
Both eye care and professionals and wearers have noticed the improvement and globally the upgrade from the previous generation to Transitions Signature lenses is close to 100 percent. We’ve garnered new users of photochromic lenses as well. Transitions Signature lenses make up more than 95 percent of our total sales in Malaysia.
What factors do you need to take into consideration when improving your products? How long do you take to improve a new product?
First and foremost, we keep abreast of consumer trends and examine the different lifestyle needs, which is why Transitions is the only photochromic supplier to offer a family of brands catered to different user profiles and needs. We have Transitions Signature lenses for users who are on the move frequently between the indoor and the outdoor environment, and Transitions XTRActive for those requiring extra protection against light. What consumers are looking for is a product that keeps up with their lifestyle, offering the adaptability, protection, comfort, enhanced vision and convenience that an ordinary clear lens cannot.
We constantly conduct life wearer testing- these real world measurements we get beyond the confines of the lab help us fine-tune our product development and advance technology on an ongoing basis.
Could you give us an insight into the general consumer breakdown demographically for your products?
Every individual needs UV protection and enhanced vision in every light in their daily life, whatever their age, gender of lifestyle. We tend not to look at the demographics of our typical users in this regard. Instead, we identify our consumers by their lifestyle needs and psychographic profiles. For Transitions Signature wearers, we’re essentially looking at highly mobile users who spend a good amount of time moving between the indoor and outdoor environment.
They require lenses that can keep up with them and adapt to changing lighting conditions. Ultimately, everyone can benefit from Transitions adaptive lenses as they provide the comfort, convenience and protection that that ordinary clear lenses cannot.
What can we expect in the future?
We are working on new photochromic lens technologies to continue to provide a wider range of high quality, adaptive lenses to improve people’s lifestyle. In the medium term, we want to introduce the different technologies in a variety of lens materials, designs and an expanded range to fit virtually any eyeglass frame. As the industry experts, we want to announce novel, exciting applications for our photochromic application technology in the long term. We’ll continue educating the public and professional trade to increase brand awareness of Transitions- it’s all about enabling everyone to live their life well lit!
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