Opti Continues Growth, Solidifies Success as Year’s First Show

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MUNICH—Vision Monday was on hand Friday, Jan. 10 through Sunday, Jan. 12 at the Fairground Messe Munchen for the 16th annual Opti-Munich trade fair. In 2014, more than 500 exhibitors featuring 1,200 plus brands from 34 countries showed in the four sold-out halls.

A survey of attendees at the show’s close underscored their satisfaction with the product range presented by exhibitors; 94 percent of all visitors rated Opti as good or very good and gave show organizers high marks. Additionally, 90 percent of visitors said the search for new products was a priority for them this year and many reported finding what they were looking for.

Many exhibitors used the opportunity to present their new collections and product innovations. Additionally, for 2014 the Opti Boxes area, a designated space where start-ups can present their products, was extended to 12 booths, versus eight booths in previous years, in Hall C4, where trendsetters and innovative, original designers exhibited. Hall C1 featured established lifestyle brands, while lenses and contact lenses were presented in Halls C2 and C3, which is also where technical equipment, precision tools and low vision products could be found.

“Companies need possibilities to present themselves and their products to a large, international audience; Opti offers exactly this,” said Dieter Dohr, chairman of the management board of the Gesellschaft fur Handwerksmessen mbH (GHM), organizers of the show. “Also, visitors often experience the premiere of start-ups with huge potential, as has been shown in previous years. Some of these once small companies have become firmly established now and in 2014 some of these exciting exhibitors were present again.”

According to Dohr, the increasing number of exhibitors, as well as visitors, is “a clear statement in favor of Opti and a clear vote for its date right at the beginning of the year.”

GHM said Saturday was the best-visited day, followed by Friday, which also saw an increase in visitors. However, despite the higher number of overall visitors, Dohr said it is not all about the numbers when accounting for the success of the show. “The right visitors have to come,” he explained. “It is the special atmosphere, the excitement, the exhibitors and visitors, which make Opti an event that no one wants to miss out on.”

“The optical industry has gained a lot of support from Opti and is glad about the good start into the new year,” stated Josef May, chairman of the Industry Association SPECTARIS. “The majority of exhibitors are very satisfied with the receipt of orders and the visitors. We now hope that a good and successful year with an increase in purchases lies ahead of us and that we can carry this enthusiasm to the final consumer.”

“Once more, Opti has proved that it satisfied the taste of its visitors with its mix of up-to-date information, new ideas and products as an important industry meeting point,” concluded Thomas Truckenbrod, president of Germany’s Central Association of Opticians. “I am satisfied that the dialogue within the industry works and I hope that the good atmosphere and the success of Opti will be reflected in the business of the opticians in the coming months.”

Organizers have announced that the next Opti will take place from Friday, Jan. 8 to 10, 2015, a move to Thursday through Saturday, at the Fairground Messe Munchen. ■

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Attendee registration started bright and early on opening day.

(L to R) Josef May, Thomas Truckenbrod and Dieter Dohr at the show’s opening press conference.

The number of visitors has increased year over year resulting in bustling aisles for 2014.

Opti was not without its share of glamour. Model Claudia Schiffer presented her new collection from Rodenstock with company CEO Oliver Kastalio; while male model Werner Schreyer showcased his artwork in collaboration with sunwear brand Gloryfy.

Opti was not without its share of glamour. Model Claudia Schiffer presented her new collection from Rodenstock with company CEO Oliver Kastalio; while male model Werner Schreyer showcased his artwork in collaboration with sunwear brand Gloryfy.

Booths like Hoya, Ogi and J.F. Rey saw steady streams of traffic over the three days.

Booths like Hoya, Ogi and J.F. Rey saw steady streams of traffic over the three days.

Booths like Hoya, Ogi and J.F. Rey saw steady streams of traffic over the three days.

Licensed collections, like Converse from Remdottica in Europe and G-Star Raw from Marchon Germany, had a strong presence with brand-centric booths.

Licensed collections, like Converse from Remdottica in Europe and G-Star Raw from Marchon Germany, had a strong presence with brand-centric booths.

Eyewear specific brands, like Prodesign and Oakley, were also strongly represented with eye-catching displays and fun activities to capture passersby.

Eyewear specific brands, like Prodesign and Oakley, were also strongly represented with eye-catching displays and fun activities to capture passersby.