WINCHESTER OPTICAL NAMED 2009 U.S. TRANSITIONS LAB OF THE YEAR

Lab’s Education and Marketing Efforts Propel Growth, Despite Economic Climate

PINELLAS PARK, Fla., Feb. 4, 2010 – Transitions Optical, Inc. has named Winchester Optical Company the 2009 U.S. Transitions Lab of the Year – recognizing the lab for its year-long achievements and growth of Transitions® lenses.  The lab was honored during a celebratory event – attended by an international audience of more than 1,400 industry professionals – at the 14th annual Transitions Academy at Disney’s Yacht & Beach Club Resort in Orlando.

Headquartered in Elmira, N.Y., Winchester Optical is a family-owned and operated company dedicated to providing the highest-quality products and services to its customers.  Throughout 2009, Winchester Optical made a commitment to Transitions, incorporating the Transitions brand into all of its key education and promotional efforts.  Despite a tough economic climate, the lab believed that customers would be willing to spend more on a quality product, if its benefits were positioned correctly.  As a result of its 2009 programs and initiatives, the lab saw a 20 percent increase in sales of Transitions lenses over the previous year.

“This year, several of our lab partners were well-deserving of the Lab of the Year title; but Winchester Optical truly set the stage for excellence – fully leveraging our programs and education to achieve growth and customer satisfaction,” said Brian Hauser, director, lens manufacturer and trade channel sales, Transitions.  “We congratulate Winchester Optical and thank them for their commitment throughout 2009 and into the future.”

The award was accepted by Brian Lynch, president of Winchester Optical, who was joined on stage by several of his colleagues.

“Winning the Transitions Lab of the Year award is an incredible honor – not only for myself, but for the entire Winchester Optical team,” said Lynch.  “We’ve been around for a long time – 108 years – and have always associated our company with high-end, premium products that can help our customers grow their business while promoting long-term patient satisfaction.  We’ve been with Transitions since the very beginning because the company offers products and a brand we believe in, and are thankful for all the support Transitions has given us.”

As the newest Transitions Lab of the Year winner, Winchester Optical was inducted into the Heritage Lab Ambassador’s Club during the ceremony.  Through the Heritage Lab program, the lab will attend an annual summit, will have input into Transitions programs, and will receive additional support to help grow their business.

Finalists for the 2009 U.S. Transitions Lab of the Year included Hirsch Optical, Corp. and Toledo Optical Laboratory, Inc.  During the recognition ceremony, Transitions also named Lab of the Year winners for three other regions, including Brazil, Latin America and EMEA (Europe, the Middle East and Africa).

  • Brazil Lab of the Year: PSA Nilo Laboratório Óptico, Belo Horizonte City
  • Latin America Lab of the Year: RyR Optilab, Guatemala
  • EMEA Lab of the Year: Lenstec Optical Laboratories, The United Kingdom

About the Transitions Lab of the Year Award

Awarded annually in the U.S. since 1991, the Transitions Lab of the Year title is presented to an independent lab that has made a significant commitment to growing its business with Transitions lenses.  Nominees are judged on their creative approaches used to achieve success for their business and their customers.  Criteria include implementing creative marketing strategies; achieving a solid percentage of growth in volume and Transitions lenses market share mix; dedication to educating staff and customers; and showing an overall commitment to

Transitions products and programs.  Past Transitions Lab of the Year winners in the United States include: Balester Optical (2008); Soderberg Ophthalmic Services (2007); Toledo Optical (2006); Diversified Ophthalmics (2005); Jorgenson Optical Supply (2004); Toledo Optical (2003); 21st Century Optics (2002); Soderberg Ophthalmic Services (2001); Midland Optical (2000); McLeod Optical (1999); Balester Optical (1998); Walman Optical (1997); Three Rivers Optical (1996); Duffens Optical (1995); Benedict Optical (1994); Southern Optical (1993); Optical Supply, Inc. (1992); and W.O.S. (1991).

About Winchester Optical

Founded in 1902, Winchester Optical Company is the oldest company among the top labs in the United States.  Headquartered in Elmira, N.Y., Winchester Optical is a family-owned and operated company dedicated to providing its customers with the highest-quality products and services.  While both of its laboratories are located in New York, Winchester Optical serves customers in the mid-Atlantic states.  Winchester Optical Medical Optics prescriptions are filled for eyecare practices all over the country.

About Transitions Optical

As the leading provider of photochromics to optical manufacturers, Transitions Optical, headquartered in Pinellas Park, Fla., offers the most advanced photochromic technology in the widest selection of lens designs and materials. Transitions Optical is driven by innovation to support the advancement of healthy sight and adaptive eyewear, and to providing its partners the tools and programs their businesses need to thrive.  Transitions® lenses are the #1-recommended photochromic lenses worldwide.

Transitions Optical’s family of products includes everyday lenses, designed to be worn indoors and darken outdoors, and performance lenses, designed to be worn outdoors in place of sun lenses.  Transitions everyday lenses adapt to light to provide more comfortable vision while protecting eyes from UV. Transitions performance lenses include the company’s sunwear line, Transitions® SOLFX™ sun lenses, which enhance visual performance in specific outdoor activities by adapting to optimize color and darkness in changing light conditions.

For more information, visit Transitions.com or TransitionsSOLFX.com, or contact Transitions Optical Customer Service at (800) 848-1506 (United States) or (877) 254-2590 (Canada).

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mail.jpg Transitions Optical, Inc. named Winchester Optical Company the 2009 U.S. Transitions Lab of the Year on Feb. 2 during the 14th annual Transitions Academy.