Visionworks Shares Store Opening With Independence Blue Cross

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(L to R) Jim Eisen, president, Visionworks; Richard Neeson, executive vice president and president of expanding markets, Independence Blue Cross; and David Holmberg, CEO, HVHC, Inc., HM Insurance Group and United Concordia Dental.
PHILADELPHIA—Continuing its expansion into the Philadelphia market, Visionworks held a ribbon-cutting event at the new Columbus Commons store in South Philadelphia, Oct. 12, 2012. The South Philadelphia opening brought together leaders from Visionworks and Independence Blue Cross (IBC) along with local community and business leaders.

“We welcome Visionworks’ entrance into our market, and we are excited to team up with Highmark, a like-minded Blue, which owns HVHC Inc., Visionworks’ parent company, through our new financial interest arrangement,” said Richard J. Neeson, IBC executive vice president and president of expanding markets. “Our vision plan customers can now use Visionworks’ optical retail centers.”

San Antonio-based Visionworks has plans to open a total of 25 stores throughout the Greater Philadelphia market by the end of 2013. Currently, there are three Visionworks stores operating in the city of Philadelphia with a number of other stores now open throughout the Philadelphia region of Pennsylvania, as well as in Deptford, Mt. Laurel and Mays Landing, N.J.

“Visionworks is also expanding in other key markets and will end up with between 38 and 40 total new stores by the end of this year in areas such as New York, Florida, Texas and Illinois,” Eisen told Vision Monday. “This will be one of the biggest growth years in the last five years since I’ve been here.” Currently operating in 39 states and the District of Columbia, Visionworks and its affiliated stores now total more than 575, which the company is currently in the midst of rebranding under the unified Visionworks banner.