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HomeminewsRodenstock Now Committed to Fast Turnaround Time

Rodenstock Now Committed to Fast Turnaround Time

Rodenstock has confirmed its commitment to expanding its presence in Australia with the announcement that the majority of lenses for the Australian market will be manufactured from Thailand from February 2014. Additionally, the company will implement the business management system – SAP – from mid 2014.

Rodenstock’s laboratory has been established in Thailand for many years, however until now it has primarily produced semi-finished blanks for finishing in Germany and more recently, freeform lenses for its white label range which is favoured by chain stores in Europe.

Ulli Hentschel, National Sales and Marketing Manager (Lens Division) at Rodenstock, said the decision to supply Australia with lenses from Rodenstock’s Thailand laboratory came in response to customer feedback.

“We have had a small group of independent optometrists and dispensers who appreciate the more customised lenses Rodenstock achieves in Germany. They haven’t been concerned about the extra time it takes to have their Rx lenses delivered and they’ve sold Rodenstock lenses to their customers on that basis.

“However a two-week turn around doesn’t work for many practices, especially independents with multiple stores,” he said.

“When we explained this to our global CEO back in August, he could see that to grow our business further here, to compete with the other global lens manufacturers, we needed much faster product delivery.

“Fortunately, he moved very quickly. He decided we would be supplied from Rodenstock’s lab in Thailand and the company immediately invested in the machinery and software packages we needed to produce Multigressiv Myview and Multigressiv Ergo lenses, which make up a large percentage of our local lens orders.”

Mr. Hentschel said for now, Rodenstock’s flagship lens, the Impression, will continue to be produced in Germany, although this may change as demand increases.

The Thailand Lab will also supply Rodenstock in Australia with a new line of lenses to meet the needs of the high volume, low cost and no gap health fund market.

“These products will be produced to the same standards as our premium lenses in terms of quality and workmanship, but they won’t be as advanced in the design,” said Mr. Hentschel.

Timed for Growth

Mr. Hentschel said timing will be much faster for Rx lens products out of Thailand, not just because of the country’s proximity to Australia, but also because the Thai lab operates six days a week. “So orders placed in the latter half of the week may be processed and despatched on Saturday for delivery back to Australia on Monday,” said Mr. Henstchel.

He anticipates that over time Rodenstock will become one of Australia’s leading lens suppliers as a result of the decision to source lenses from the Thailand laboratory. Rodenstock is one of the largest suppliers of lenses in Germany and is also a leading supplier to the European market.

“What goes on in Europe in terms of Rodenstock lens sales is enormous compared to Rodenstock’s presence in Australia, but that gives us a strong indication of the potential we have to build the business here,” he said.

“We’re gearing up for growth and looking forward to a strong year ahead.”