Amidst the shutting down of virtually every major city around the world, businesses are scrambling to stay afloat. The optical business is an industry that has been hit particularly hard, as most cities and states consider eye exams non-essential medical. At the same time, optical shops are not considered essential retail businesses either, so most optometrists and opticians have been hunkering down at home, binging on missed TV series and a wide variety of optical webinars and podcasts.
At the same time, rent is due for most everyone, as are a panoply of invoices and bills that are a part of most everyone’s day to day costs of doing business. Paying bills when no income is coming in is quite a trick. Hopefully, you and your business/practice are finding ways to keep afloat, whether through the PPP, if you were lucky enough to get in on that, your savings, your credit cards, or a winning lotto ticket.
Many optical manufacturers are working with their ECP partners to help soften the economic blows. Etnia Barcelona is one of those companies. The Spanish eyewear company, founded by David Pellicer recently announced they have expanded their financing plans to allow more flexibility for missing, delayed, and early payments.
According to David Pellicer, “We have also maximized our digital tools. We were able to get 90% of our team working remotely. Advanced digital tools have allowed us to give our shoppers a quality customer experience, albeit from a distance. We have implemented the virtual fitting room in the Extranet to optimize the experience. We have activated chat, which allows our Customer Service team to provide real-time service.”
Etnia also announced they will be locating their 65,000 square foot Barcelona Production plan within their headquarters, taking up 6 floors of the facility. This will allow a faster more streamlined process and turnaround for customized capsules and collections.
In addition, the Etnia Barcelona Foundation is working on a post Covid-19 project. They have always helped vulnerable communities, who will be even harder hit by this crisis. Etnia Barcelona announced they will be distributing a total of 150,000 pairs of glasses to optical stores so that they can help struggling families in their area. Through this collaborative project between their foundation and optical stores, their efforts can have greater reach.