Optipro Australia has more than doubled in size with a radical new membership plan luring 16 more optometry practices to the buying group in just under two months.
Optipro Manager Director George Nassar said he expects that number to further increase, as many more practices have expressed interest in the national group.
“The difference between us and the other buying groups is there is no pressure. The new membership scheme, with no upfront fees, has made a big difference,” Mr. Nassar said.
He said members are signing up for the option of using Optipro Australia’s preferred suppliers, to receive group-buying discounts.
The great thing about the second tier for members is that it doesn’t require a financial commitment
“They have the freedom to use the suppliers on the books if they want, to get the savings. There are no hidden service fees.
“All we ask them to do is to display the Optipro Australia logo somewhere, but we don’t even really enforce that,” Mr. Nassar said.
Optipro members were initially required to pay an AUD$3,000 entry to the group, in return for a share allocation. While a share membership is still on offer, Mr. Nassar said the second tier membership, introduced in December last year, involves a simple, one-page agreement and no entry fees.
In the first two months since the introduction of the second tier membership, the size of the buying group increased from 14 (in December 2011) to 29 at the end of January 2012.
“The great thing about the second tier for members is that it doesn’t require a financial commitment and optometrists still get the benefits of being aligned to a buying group.”
He said the new membership offer is being taken up by smaller optometry practices, in both rural and city practices.