opti inspired as an industry highlight right at the start of the year and put the ophthalmic optics family in the mood for successful cooperation and order growth in 2023. With an increase in visitors of 19.2% compared to the previous year, opti is in an upbeat spirit together with the entire optics & design industry. This year, around 15,500 visitors from 67 countries gathered in Munich to take advantage of the diverse range of innovative formats for knowledge, sales, and exchange in a positive atmosphere. A total of 307 exhibitors from 28 countries exhibited at opti 2023. “opti is back and on course for success! Three inspiring trade show days with visitors and exhibitors from all over the world have come to an end. I would like to explicitly thank everyone who believed in opti with us and made the success possible! Seeing the industry united again in such a great atmosphere was my highlight,” says Klaus Plaschka, Managing Director of GHM Gesellschaft für Handwerksmessen mbH.
Summary of the trade fair and visitor interest
The new hall constellation created a special atmosphere. Thomas Truckenbrod’s (President of the Central Association of Opticians and Optometrists) personal conclusion: “The trade show is alive. And how! For me, opti was a successful relaunch of an essential trade show for the optical industry in Munich. The compact number of halls, which I felt were well attended, contributed to a pleasant trade show feeling. Despite all the circumstances, the consistently positive mood gives us hope for a commercially successful year.”
An impression that is confirmed throughout. Karsten Möhrer, Eyewear Sales Director at Eschenbach Optik: “The sales per person that our sales force was able to achieve at opti 2023 is very satisfactory. Thanks to our adapted stand concept, we managed to optimally absorb the visitor frequency in Munich. ESCHENBACH’s participation at opti 2023 was thus a success!”
Exhibitors draw an overall positive balance on visitor and order volume. “opti 2023? Fantastic! Awesome! The trade fair was outstandingly successful for us. As Hecht Kontaktlinsen, we agreed from the start that we would like to be present again in January. Whether customers, industry partners, universities, or new market players – opti is the optimal and most important platform for us to maintain personal contacts. We are even more pleased that the response was so phenomenal!”, sums up Mario Rehnert, Head of Marketing at Hecht Kontaktlinsen GmbH.
Innovative program features
Impulse lectures followed by discussions in the SUSTAINABILITY HUB and MYOPIA HUB offered interested visitors the opportunity to learn about trends, research methods and technologies as well as to discuss individual questions and challenges within a group. Exhibitor tours, organized by epitop GmbH and other exhibitors, addressed various key topics in ophthalmic optics, for example, “Smart imaging in ophthalmic screening”. Thus, opti gave important impulses to the market. In particular, the opti TREND “Myopia Management” was seen by 78% of visitors as important for their everyday professional lives, and regarding the MYOPIA HUB, more than three-quarters of respondents gave opti top marks.
The social media sessions were also popular, with Sarah Schleicher, German optician and eyewear blogger (19,000 Instagram followers) and French optician Anne-Sophie Lapetite (100,000 Instagram fans) from AnSoStyle answering questions.
Promoting innovation and new talent
Another highlight was the presentation of the second opti BOX AWARD. The winner is LARS Brillen – Swiss Made, a start-up that has scored with its 3D printed frames and pays attention to timelessness and sustainability. They were chosen by an international jury of experts, who honor emerging designers for their unique products with the award, evaluating the new criteria of “innovation”, “design”, “functionality” and “sustainability”. LARS Brillen is thus following in the footsteps of eyewear designer Beate Leinz, who won the first opti BOX AWARD. The winning team from LARS Brillen: “We traveled to opti to learn: we wanted to present our collection and get feedback on our patented hinge and our models. The fact that we received so much wonderful feedback on our collection over the three days, had many interesting conversations with potential customers, were able to discuss technical issues with other product designers and exchange ideas about the latest technologies – and even got to travel back to Bern with the opti BOX Award in our pocket, exceeds all our expectations!”
opti 2024 – the industry is looking forward
A trade show that makes customers want more: 83% of visitors are already looking forward to the next opti. For most opticians, the date in Munich is already fixed in their calendars. opti 2024 will take place in Munich from January 12 to 14, 2024.
More voices from the industry on opti 2023
“Viva opti! The curiosity of many visitors and the returned longing for networking have prevailed. We are all returning home now in great spirits with some interesting novelties, trends, lectures, encounters, and a few pleasing orders in our luggage. We are looking forward to an intensive dialogue with each other in the upcoming months; we all feel a strong commitment to opti.” – Mirjam Rösch, Chair Consumer Optics, SPECTARIS.
“opti 2023 showed that opticians and optometrists want this trade show in Munich at exactly that time of the year. The order volume for us was very good and thus the trade fair has proven to be an optimal start to the year. The decisive factor for us in this positive assessment is the crowd of opticians, making the journey to Munich in large numbers.” – Werner Paletschek, Managing Director of OWP Brillen GmbH.
“opti has been very positive for Sea2see. German opticians understand the sustainable path Sea2see started six years ago and thanks to them we are generating a change in this industry. More than 1,000 of them already promote our value in Germany. I am pleased to be a reference sustainable brand today in the market and looking forward to inspiring more. Congrats on the great initiative of creating a sustainable hub, that’s how positive impact is generated.” – François van den Abeele, Founder & CEO Sea2see Eyewear.
opti is the international trade show for optics & design which takes place annually as the industry kick-off in January in Munich. It offers trade visitors the complete spectrum of ophthalmic products, from spectacle frames and lenses, contact lenses, refraction, diagnosis, and low vision to shopfitting and technical equipment. opti is the order platform and the location for product premières by international market leaders and start-ups alike. The event was first held in 1998, and since 2008 has been organized by GHM Gesellschaft für Handwerksmessen mbH.