Coronavirus BRIEFING
Supported by Essilor

Strong U.S. Sales Power EssilorLuxottica’s First Half 2021 Revenue

By Staff
Monday, August 2, 2021 12:27 AM CHARENTON-LE-PONT, France—EssilorLuxottica (Reuters: ESLX.PA) turned in a solid financial performance for the first half of 2021, buoyed by the U.S. market, which generated more than half of the Group’s revenue. Business acceleration in France, Italy, the U.K., Mainland China, Australia and Brazil, particularly during the second quarter, marked EssilorLuxottica’s return to the pre-pandemic levels of 2019, the company said. Revenue for the Group during the first half of 2021, ending June 30, totaled €8,768 million, a 5.7 percent increase over first half 2019 at constant exchange rates.

"ALL CONSUMING, A Deep Dive Into the New Consumer Mindset" Is VM's Next Virtual Summit Session on Aug. 11

By Staff
Monday, August 2, 2021 12:24 AM NEW YORK—Are you clear about how customer and patient priorities have changed in the past 18 months? How to recapture their loyalty and recalibrate your connections to them?

B2B Digital Ad Spending Climbs at a Greater Pace Than Expected, Research Firm Finds

By Staff
Friday, July 30, 2021 11:53 AM NEW YORK—In 2020, B2Bs marketers in the United States overhauled their marketing and advertising as the coronavirus pandemic eliminated in-person channels. Digital ad spending, never a central part of B2B go-to market strategies, surged, according to a recent report from eMarketer.

The B2B digital ad spending in the U.S. market increased during the pandemic from $6.55 billion in 2019 to $8.68 billion in 2020, increasing 32.5 percent year over year, according to the firm’s July 2021 estimates.

Increased investment will continue this year, according to eMarketer. B2Bs marketers will spend $10.84 billion in 2021, climbing 24.9 percent year over year. Through the rest of the forecast period, the B2B digital market will continue to grow but at a slower rate: up 16.8 percent in 2022 to $12.65 billion and growing another 15.1 percent in 2023 to $14.57 billion, according to the research firm.

Hoya Group Reports Significant Increases in Sales and Profits in First Quarter

By Staff
Friday, July 30, 2021 12:27 AM TOKYO—Boosted by strong sales in both North America and Europe, Hoya Group (7741:JP) on Thursday reported that sales for the first quarter (April 1 through June 30) of its current fiscal year totaled 158,000 million yen, an increase of 44.5 percent from the same period of the previous fiscal year. The quarterly profit before tax totaled 51,018 million yen, and quarterly profit amounted to 41,299 million yen, up 59.7 percent and 61.1 percent, respectively. The quarterly profit margin before tax was 32.3 percent, representing a year-on-year increase of 3.1 points.

Registration Now Open for DaTE 2021, Full List of Exhibitors Announced

By Staff
Friday, July 30, 2021 12:15 AM MILAN—Registration is now open for DaTE 2021, the ninth edition of the international trade show dedicated to avant-garde eyewear. The show is set to take place from Saturday, September 11, 2021 through Monday, September 13, 2021, at Leopolda di Firenze in Florence. More than 120 international brands, all known for their originality, designs and innovative use of materials, plan to exhibit at the show. The theme of this year’s event is “shaping the future of eyewear,” and the show’s “tailor made” format is designed to cater to those with a passion for experimentation. The full list of exhibitors will be announced this morning on the DaTE website, and registration is now open online.

IQVIA: Use of Digital Health Tools Surges Amid COVID

By Staff
Friday, July 30, 2021 12:04 AM The proliferation of health apps and digital health tools played an important role in the pandemic. As the capabilities and technologies embedded in these tools improve, as the application to patient care and clinical research is extended and as these tools become more of a mainstream part of healthcare delivery, they are poised for greater use throughout the health system.

2021 Brings Back-to-Class Shopping to Record Levels

By Staff
Thursday, July 29, 2021 2:56 PM WASHINGTON—Consumers plan to spend record amounts for both school and college supplies as families and students plan to return to in-person classrooms this fall, according to the annual survey recently released by the National Retail Federation and Prosper Insights & Analytics.

“The pandemic forced parents and their school-aged children to quickly adapt to virtual learning, and they did it with an incredible amount of resolve and flexibility,” NRF president and CEO Matthew Shay said. “We enter the new school year with plans to return to the classroom and retailers are prepared to help Americans find and purchase whatever they need to make this transition as seamless as possible.”

Families with children in elementary through high school plan to spend an average of $848.90 on school items, which is $59 more than last year. Total back-to-school spending is expected to reach a record $37.1 billion, up from $33.9 billion last year and an all-time high in the survey's history.

College students and their families plan to spend an average of $1,200.32 on college or university items, an increase of $141 over last year. Over half ($80) of this increase is due to increased spending on electronics and dorm furnishings. Total back-to-college spending is expected to reach a record $71 billion, up from $67.7 billion in 2020. 

Click here to read more about back to school spending from the NRF.

Healthy Eyes Advantage (HEA) Acquires Professional Eye Care Associates of America (PECAA)

By Staff
Thursday, July 29, 2021 11:45 AM BOCA RATON, Fla.—Healthy Eyes Advantage (HEA) announced today that it has acquired Professional Eye Care Associates of America (PECAA), expanding its commitment to the independent eyecare channel and increasing the size of the community it serves to 12,000 independent eyecare professionals (IECPs) across all 50 states. The acquisition was completed on July 27. Financial terms were not disclosed. PECAA was founded in Portland, Oregon, in 2006 by three independent optometrists. Over the past 15 years, the company has grown from a small, Northwest based organization to one of the nation’s premier doctor alliance groups serving nearly 2,000 independent ECP members.

The Washington Post Will Require Employees to Be Vaccinated

By Staff
Thursday, July 29, 2021 12:04 AM Even though the overwhelming majority of Post employees have already provided proof of vaccination, I do not take this decision lightly. However, in considering the serious health issues and genuine safety concerns of so many Post employees, I believe the plan is the right one.

The U.S. States Closest to Full Vaccination

By Staff
Wednesday, July 28, 2021 3:25 PM The U.S. was quick off the blocks in its vaccination campaign but its pace has now slackened considerably. Earlier in the year, the world looked on with envy as the U.S. got jabs into arms at lighting speed but by late July, it had only managed to fully vaccinate 48.7 percent of its population. Many of the countries that looked on with envy back in February and March have now surpassed the U.S. in terms of full vaccinations and the list includes Canada (54.7 percent), Spain (54.3 percent) and Germany (48.7 percent) according to Our World in Data.

The current level of vaccination in the U.S. is not high enough to stop the spread of the highly infectious Delta variant of Covid-19 and 48 states saw their case count grow by 10 percent over the past week while 34 percent experienced a 50 percent leap. 

Optical Sales Increased for the Week of July 19-25, Jobson’s Latest Weekly Tracker Shows

By Staff
Wednesday, July 28, 2021 12:27 AM NEW YORK—Optical sales increased slightly last week, July 19-25, with most product/service categories on the upswing, according to Jobson’s most recent Practice Performance Tracker. The national average for gross revenue at ECP locations increased by 1 index point, bringing it to within 1 index point of the level it reached at this point last year and 3 index points above where it was in 2019. All optical sales categories, except contact lenses, experienced slight upticks last week. Exams/refractions had the largest increase of 3 index points, while contact lenses at the other end of the sales spectrum decreased by 1 index point. Rounding out the increases were lens pairs, which were up 2 index points and frame units, up 1 index point.

Women In Optometry: Look on the Bright Side

By Staff
Tuesday, July 27, 2021 5:00 PM When you arrive at Wentz + Woodrich Eyecare in Lubbock, Texas, you can’t miss the floor-to-ceiling moss green wall decked with illuminated script reading: See the Bright Side. It’s the most positive of outlooks after all that Karly Woodrich, OD, and Garrett Wentz, OD, have been through since they opened in March 2020, only to be shut down five days later for emergent care only. “There are things that happen—and there’s been a lot since we opened—but it’s important to try to see the bright side,” Dr. Woodrich said. “It won’t always be this way. We try to live personally by that motto and at our practice, as well.” Read More

Fauci Wants to Start Fighting Next Pandemic Now

By Staff
Tuesday, July 27, 2021 2:33 PM In an effort to avoid another pandemic in the coming years, Dr. Anthony Fauci wants to launch an ambitious plan to make prototype vaccines that could protect against pathogens from 20 families of viruses that threaten human lives.

Breakthrough Cases Rising With Delta: Here's What That Means

By Staff
Tuesday, July 27, 2021 2:30 PM At a recent town hall meeting in Cincinnati, Ohio, President Joe Biden was asked about COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, and deaths rising in response to the Delta variant.

These 20 U.S. Counties Are ‘Delta Danger Zones’

By Staff
Tuesday, July 27, 2021 9:03 AM A new data analysis of Delta variant coronavirus cases in the U.S. has found that 20 counties are “Delta danger zones.”