100% Optical

Opportunity abounds at 100% Optical 2023

OT  hears the latest updates from show organisers, from a new plan for the CPD programme, to independent eyewear brands and 30-second sponsor insight

people at 100% Optical

Registration has opened for 100% Optical 2023, to take place on 25–27 February 2023 and set to be the “biggest show yet,” according to organisers.

Nathan Garnett, show director, recommended delegates register early, telling OT: “By registering early, you get the chance to book in those meetings and get notified of CPD seminars and workshops as they drop. Get planning early, because the end of February will come around quickly.”

The show has seen exciting developments in recent months as CooperVision joined the fold, committing to exhibit and deliver education at the 2023 event.

Garnett said: “The strength and depth of the show is key for us. Having CooperVision at the show alongside Bausch + Lomb, Johnson & Johnson Vision and Safilens gives us a compelling contact lens offering to match up with what has always been a really strong eyewear offering.”

Exhibitors have exciting plans for the show with several companies taking on bigger stands. Garnett said: “People are putting more investment into the show to match the ambitions of the optical sector.”

International independent eyewear brands have struggled to make it to the UK in the last two years due to restrictions and the effects of the pandemic, but organisers now expect the Studio area of the show to be bigger than ever.

“We think there will be twice as many independent eyewear brands in the Studio this year,” Garnett told OT. To accommodate this growth, organisers are planning to introduce a bar to the Studio area which will act as a networking hub where high-end practices can meet with unique independent brands.

The release and booking of CPD will look different for 2023, with programme details to be released in phases from October, through November and December, before opening for bookings in January.

AOP members will have priority booking from 3 January, before the booking platform will open to all delegates the following week.

Dr Ian Beasley, AOP head of education and OT clinical editor, shared: “By releasing the programme in the New Year, we hope people will have a better idea of when they want to attend.”

Under the previous system, where CPD opened for booking in autumn, Beasley acknowledged that it was difficult for delegates to know in advance what their plans might be by the time the show arrived. This resulted in many people pre-booking sessions across all three days, but often with the intention of attending on one day only.

When the CPD programme opens in January, two thirds of seats will be available for booking, while one third will be retained for walk-in visitors on a first-come, first-served basis.

“We want people to book onto the sessions they intend to come to, and for those that decide to attend the event at short notice, to have the confidence that they will be able to consume educational content at the show,” Beasley added.

With the first phase of CPD details to be revealed in October, Beasley advised delegates to start making plans in preparation for the January booking period.

“It is an ideal time for some housekeeping – take a look at your General Optical Council portal and personal development plan. Are there domains you have yet to satisfy? Consider what content would align to this. The programme will allow you to identify any domains you are missing, and provide a stimulus for considering what skills or knowledge you might want to consolidate or refresh,” he explained.

“I’m looking for… stand-out eyewear”

OT sought out a few long-loved and new brands heading to the show in February to find out what to expect

Modstyle: New for 100% Optical 2023, this company will be launching its brands, Avanti Eclipse and Kaleyedoscope, to the UK market.

Managing director, Mark Wymond, said: “Modstyle has been selling high-quality affordable eyewear to the Australian market for 40 years. In 2021 we launched in the US markets. This has been a great success and has given us more confidence to work with more countries.”

holding frames
Nathalie Blanc will return to the show after a 2022 debut appearance

Maison Nathalie Blanc: This brand arrived at the show in 2022 and will return in 2023, bringing its French flair to the independent eyewear scene. Reflecting on the brand’s debut appearance at 100% Optical, designer Nathalie Blanc said the first show post-pandemic coincided with the reopening of borders, and was “the perfect time to participate as it was the first time for Maison Nathalie Blanc and I, as we found our agent in the UK to develop our brands in the territory.”

Hinting at what delegates can expect from the brand in 2023, Blanc said: “We want to continue the story we started last year with our British clients. We want to introduce the new collection and continue to increase awareness in UK for Nathalie Blanc Paris, Monsieur Blanc, and Blanc.”

MAC Eyewear will present the Priscilla collection from Ronit Furst

MAC Eyewear: The distributor to independent practices will be showcasing collections from its portfolio of leading European designers and manufacturers. The company took home a Love Eyewear award in 2022 in the Women’s Sunglasses Frame of the Year section for the JF Rey ‘2947’ sun frame.

Mark Carpenter, managing director, said: “We are so excited about 100% Optical 2023. We will be doing our very best to build on the successes of the show in 2022, where our booth was flooded with customers looking for our collections.”

The company will be presenting Specs by Prue, a new update to its Prue Leith eyewear collection, along with new styles from J.F.Rey and the Priscilla collection from Ronit Furst. Delegates can also expect “amazing new styles” from Coco Song, CCS, Struktur, Outspoken, De Still and Pugnale.

“We might even have a few surprises up our sleeves as we are looking to bring in a new collection for 100% Optical 2023,” Carpenter added.

Mokki Eyewear is bringing its frames for babies, toddlers and children to the UK market

Mokki Eyewear: Another new entrant for 2023, the Norwegian eyewear brand was established in Oslo more than 25 years ago and is now entering the UK market.

Moshe Ohana, CEO and owner of Mokki, explained: “Our original glasses are designed in-house to combine contemporary Nordic styling, top-notch eye protection and uncompromising quality.”

The company specialises in children’s eyewear and plans to showcase its award-winning Click & Change frame design for the first time in the UK.

Ohana added: “We are thrilled and excited to participate for the first time in a major exhibition in Britain, where we will introduce our innovative design of Mokki Click & Change eyewear for babies, toddlers and children.”