Spotlight on FEA Industries

By Christie Waker

FEA is focused on technology. This fourth-generation family-owned lab is located in downtown Morton, Pennsylvania with three buildings and 74 employees. They do things differently at FEA and it seems to be working. With only one sales rep, the company relies on word-of-mouth, mailings, and online marketing to move their products. They’ve added their own magazine called OPT, which is distributed quarterly to customers and potential customers, and has unique articles such as, “Roxanne, you don’t have to worry about that blue light.”

 “We are not just selling lenses. We are the lens manufacturer so it’s our responsibility to market our lenses and coatings in order to take our business to the next level,” explained Bill Heffner, aka Other Bill, director of IT, marketing and sales.

 FEA has their own line of standard lenses, AR coatings and free-form progressive lenses.  They’ve sent out AR sample kits to their 890 active accounts. They’ve created unique consumer Websites for each of their proprietary brands www.independencear.com and www.eaglelenses.com.

“If half of your business is Varilux, then they still have power over you,” said Heffner, which explains why FEA feels it’s so important to their business to have their own brands.

In addition to the lens and AR options below, FEA will soon be adding their own photochromic brand as well.

Eagle Lenses are their most popular compensated lens with a clear-above-the-180 distance field of view. Many patients find this preferable, as distance viewing is often the most demanding task of a progressive lens.

Independence AR: Independence Tech is the newest offering in the FEA Independence AR line. In addition to offering all the benefits found in their Independence AR coatings, Independence Tech provides the added benefits of blue-light attenuation. This coating is ideal for those who not only want to eliminate reflections from light but for those that also want to protect their eyes from the harmful blue light emitted by modern technology.

Constitution HD: The Constitution HD is a free-form progressive lens that is designed with a budget in mind. While not the latest in free-form design technology, the Constitution HD is still a full backside progressive lens and offers a good balance of price
and performance.

When asked, “What their plans were for the next five years and beyond?” Heffner replied, “Take over the world!”

To that end, FEA has added a third shift to keep up with demand and is expanding their physical foot print with the addition of a new building that will house the finishing department, opening up more room for generating lenses in the lab.

Notable Accomplishments include:

Fourth generation, family-owned optical lab

Recognized as a Top Lab by Vision Monday every year since 2008

Recognized as the third largest independent lab by volume in the United States

Created personalized progressives, a combination of free-form and conventional progressive designs to maximize lens performance

Created high-definition multifocals, improving the optics of conventional bifocals and trifocals with free-form enhancement

Developed and integrated a vast array of proprietary software and software extensions for use in their daily laboratory operations.

Pioneered the online presence of optical laboratories and have continued to reinvent and modernize their web presence over the years. They now have a state-of-the-art website that won the optical laboratory Website of the Year award in 2015.

With thirty years and counting in the optical lab business, FEA shows no signs of slowing down.

 

 

 


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Labtalk-November/December 2017