Bupa Australia, which operates some of the leading private health insurance brands – HBA, MBF and Mutual Community -, has announced the full acquisition of Health Eyewear Pty Ltd and its 27 subsidiary Blink Optical outlets, based in five states.
Bupa Australia and Blink Optical Pty Ltd had been operating the stores as a joint venture (Health Eyewear) for the past two years. Bupa Australia acquired the business as part of its acquisition of the MBF Group in June 2008.
The acquisition will enable HBA, MBF and Mutual Community members to access better value and higher benefits (including no gap packages) on purchases from Blink Optical outlets, compared to those available at other optical providers.
Blink Optical outlets are full-service optical stores where both members and the general public can receive eye health examinations, as well as purchase an extensive range of contacts, glasses and eyecare products.
Bupa does not anticipate any job losses associated with the acquisition for the 100 Blink employees operating at 27 stores throughout Qld., NSW, Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania…
Bupa Australia’s Managing Director, Richard Bowden, said: “This acquisition highlights our ongoing commitment to develop a range of complementary offerings to our core health insurance business that truly helps members live longer, healthier, happier lives.
“It also ensures that we can continue to deliver excellent value for money to members in a financially sustainable way, while ensuring that their out-of-pocket costs are reduced when they purchase at a Blink store.”
Importantly, Bupa does not anticipate any job losses associated with the acquisition for the 100 Blink employees operating at 27 stores throughout Queensland, NSW, Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania; and the business will continue to operate under the Blink optical brand.
Bupa says the transition for customers will be seamless and that “the acquisition will provide enormous benefits to Blink stores given they will be fully supported by an international healthcare company committed to leading the local market in optical services.”
Health Eyewear Chief Financial Officer, Paul Mahony, and National Operations Manager, Simon Metcalfe, will remain with Blink Optical following the acquisition.
Bowden said that the acquisition will help reduce Bupa’s pressure on premium increases associated with funding optical services. In addition, it’s expected the new venture will generate around AUD$20 million per annum in revenue.