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GrandVision considers sunglasses a special category of optical products. Traditionally sunglasses have been marketed primarily as a fashion item rather than an eye care product and they are often sold through sunglass speciality stores. Nevertheless, sunglasses provide several important functional benefits, including protection against ultraviolet radiation and glare and improved vision in various situations, including many sports. Over 50% of the population need eyesight correction and the vast majority of these wear glasses, so standard sunglasses are not suitable. Today only 17% of the sunglasses sold actually have prescription lenses.
To address this gap in the market of sunglasses with optical benefits and features, GrandVision has developed the sunglass format under the banner “Solaris”. By the end of 2014, Solaris already had 811 points of sale operating in 31 countries. Many of these points of sale are within our existing stores. This gives customers who buy a new pair of prescription glasses or contact lenses also the opportunity to choose a pair of sunglasses that meets their needs.
Solaris offers customers a complete product range in terms of price depth, brand variety and functionality, ranging from high quality, affordable exclusive brands to well-known third-party fashion brands. In addition, over 70% of Solaris’ sunglass frames can be fitted with prescription lenses.