Arabian nights beckon for top independents

Rodenstock award winners scoop trip to Oman in March 2016

Arabian nights beckon for top independents
Rodenstock named BBR Optometry as the 2015 Rodenstock Centre of Excellence at its prestigious annual awards ceremony in London last week (16 December).

The Hereford practice, which retained the award, was presented with the trophy for overall best-performing practice for 2015. It also scooped an award for its success in dispensing Rodenstock’s Solitaire 2 coated lenses.

The Burnett Hodd & Jenkins Sidcup practice was named runner-up in the Centre of Excellence category, while Peepers of Banbury, Oxfordshire, came third.

The Burnett Hodd & Jenkins practice also won the licence brand eyewear category, as well as the Rodenstock Eyewear section.

More than 250 Rodenstock Club members attended the lunch and awards ceremony at the Jumeirah Carlton Tower in Knightsbridge, where practices from across the UK competed in a number of product-specific categories, as well as a marketing section.

The Turners VisionCare practice in Bridgnorth, Shropshire, won the marketing initiative category, while DJ Bull Optometrists, of Burnham-on-Sea, Somerset, won the Wimbledon sunglasses category.

Claudine Ickeringill of Chichester, West Sussex, won the Ergo Lens section, while Memory Opticians of Salisbury, Wiltshire, won the Perfection lens category.

All of the winners (pictured) will join Rodenstock on a trip to Muscat in Oman in March.
At the awards ceremony, guests were entertained by Michael Portillo, who reflected on his time as a “former future prime minister” and his more current role of a presenter on the Great Continental Railway Journeys travel documentary.

Rodenstock managing director, Niels Jensen, told guests that the optical landscape in the UK had undergone tremendous changes over the past 10–15 years, from being a sector made up of about 50/50% independents/multiples to possibly 25/75% at present.

While noting that this might suggest that there would soon not be many independent opticians left on the High Street, Mr Jensen said he was convinced that during 2015, independent opticians had either embarked on a U-turn, or accelerated one underway.

Mr Jensen explained: “In recent years we introduced a marketing initiative award to our Rodenstock Club Awards, because we recognise the importance of a strong marketing strategy for independent optical practices.

“We received an overwhelming number of entries this year, which demonstrates the increased commitment of our customers to marketing all aspects of the practice and how best to differentiate the independent practice.”

Mr Jensen concluded: “Rodenstock works with our customers to assist them with a wide range of marketing initiatives, such as local events, brand awareness, social media, visual merchandising – all required to create a clearly defined marketing strategy from start to finish.”