Lensabl, the company that has built a business putting prescription lenses into any style of glasses frame, has raised $3.7 million in a new round of funding.
Based in Los Angeles, Lensabl already has an agreement inked with the city’s latest tech wunderkind, partnering with the spectacles-producing augmented reality luminaries at Snap.
“We are the preferred prescription provider of Snapchat Spectacles,” says Lensabl chief executive Andrew Bilinsky. “[And] we are already talking to and partnering with a variety of brands to start and scale their prescription operations [and] really scale our direct to consumer lens business.”
Powering that effort is the new $3.7 million in funding, which came from a clutch of big name strategic partners, venture firms and individual angel investors. Rogue Venture Partners, the same lead investor behind SightBox, a contact lens subscription business acquired by Johnson & Johnson, led the round. Additional investors, including Birchmere Ventures, Aspect Ventures, Cherry Tree Investments, Amplify, Luma Launch, Watertower Ventures and Crowdsmart (a crowdfunding platform), also participated in the financing.
For Bilinsky, the opportunity in setting up a business exclusively focused on filling prescriptions means reduced prices and better options for the estimated 188.7 million people who wear corrective eyewear or contact lenses in the U.S.
“We’re offering every different type of prescription lens for every different frame brand,” says Bilinsky. “[We’re] mimicking what a customer can do going into a LensCrafters at up to 70 percent cheaper than a traditional provider.”
And given the changing ways in which glasses buyers are shopping for frames, launching a business that caters to providing the right lenses at a lower price makes sense, Bilinsky says.
“With Amazon becoming the largest individual reseller of eyewear in the U.S., every frame that people buy that needs to be re-lensed. It’s a secondary market in the same way that you would put new rims on the car,” says Bilinsky.
Lensabl offers about 400 different permutations of lenses and 20 different tint colors. “It’s a customization platform for your frames,” says Bilinsky.