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Essilor Announces New Independent Distribution Division Crizal EXT Labs

By Essilor News


DALLAS – (September 12, 2006) – Essilor of America, Inc. announces the addition of two new Independent Distribution Division (IDD) Crizal® EXT labs: McLeod Optical and Optical Prescription Laboratory (OPL). These two labs now have the capabilities to produce Crizal in-house. Eye care professionals will benefit from improved service time through this expansion of the distribution network.

Crizal products are high-performance anti-reflective (AR) coatings from Essilor that reduce glare and protect lenses from scratches, smudges, dust and dirt. Crizal offers patients sharper and clearer visual performance, and leads the industry in advanced technology and product performance. Three products make up the Crizal family: Crizal, Crizal Alizé® and the newest addition, Crizal Alizé with Clear Guard™. Crizal products are known for the two-sided scratch resistance and advanced hydrophobic property that reduces dirt, oil, grime and fingerprints, giving patients the clearest vision in an easy-to-clean lens that stays cleaner longer.

“We are thrilled to add two new Crizal distribution centers to our network. McLeod Optical and Optical Prescription Laboratory are part of a select group of labs with the capability to produce Crizal in-house,” said Bob Colucci, president, Independent Distribution Division. “The more labs we have that can utilize our technology, the better we are able to serve both the ECPs and their patients.”

McLeod Optical has five locations serving the New England area including: Augusta, Bangor and Eliot, Maine; Waterbury, Conn. and Warwick R.I. The Crizal EXT coating center is located in the Warwick, R.I. lab. Optical Prescription Laboratory is based in Pelham, Ala., and serves Alabama, southern Tennessee, western Georgia and eastern Mississippi.

Through this partnership with Essilor, McLeod and OPL Crizal EXT labs are able to deliver cutting-edge superior products and services to eye care professionals (ECPs). These labs are able to utilize the research and development leadership of Essilor to ensure their success with Crizal EXT technology in-house, and they receive full support from Essilor as a technology partner.

“Essilor has been outstanding in providing the expertise, guidance and support as we transformed a significant portion of our Warwick lab into a self-contained coating center clean room. Essilor tech representatives installed all EXT machines and peripherals, and provided in-depth training for our AR staff,” said Dave Thomas, vice president, McLeod Optical. “We're thrilled to be the first New England lab providing our customers with 'local' in-house Crizal service.”

Danny and Sherry Pugh, president and vice president, Optical Prescription Lab, said, “Since 1977, Optical Prescription Lab has focused on the needs of the independent professional. We’re committed to providing the best premium products, lab technology and service to our customers in the Southeast region.”

Crizal Alizé with Clear Guard has unparallel durability, superior cleanability and smudge resistance that provides wearers the clearest vision possible. With an unmatched hydrophobic coating, Crizal Alizé with Clear Guard allows water and oil to simply roll off, minimizing the need for cleaning. In addition, it has incorporated the same technology used in plasma televisions to add an integrated anti-particulate layer into the AR process. The result is a superior AR coating that stays cleaner, longer than any other AR coating, is easier to clean, and because of less cleaning, the lens is less likely to scratch. With the proprietary Pad Control System™, Crizal lenses are also the easiest premium AR to edge.


Essilor is the leading manufacturer of optical lenses in the United States and is the market leader in progressive,  high-index and anti-reflective coated lenses. A pioneer in the development and production of ophthalmic lenses,  Essilor employs more than 8,500 people throughout North America. Essilor manufactures optical lenses under the  Varilux®, Crizal®, Thin&Lite®, DEFINITY™ and other Essilor brand names. Essilor Laboratories of America (ELOA) is the largest, and most trusted, optical lab network in the U.S. and offers a wide choice of services and lens brands, including Essilor premium lenses, to eye care professionals across the nation. Essilor of America, Inc. (Essilor) is a  subsidiary of Paris-based Essilor International, S.A., a publicly held company traded on the Euronext Paris stock  exchange (Reuters: ESSI.PA).

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Varilux, Crizal and Alizé are registered trademarks and DEFINITY and Pad Control System are trademarks of Essilor International, S.A. Crizal Alizé with Clear Guard is a trademark and Thin&Lite is a registered trademark of Essilor of America, Inc.