Lenskart buys Japan’s Owndays

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The current major shareholders L Catterton, Mitsui and Principal Investments will exit their positions to Lenskart…reports Asian Lite News

Omnichannel eyewear unicorn Lenskart on Thursday announced it has taken a majority stake in Japanese eyewear brand Owndays in a deal that is reportedly around $400 million.

This will take the merged firm to reach 13 markets in Asia including India, Singapore, Thailand, Taiwan, Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia and Japan.

Owndays Co-founders, CEO Shuji Tanaka and COO Take Umiyama, will continue to be shareholders and lead the management team which will continue to operate as a separate brand.

The current major shareholders L Catterton, Mitsui and Principal Investments will exit their positions to Lenskart.

“I see Lenskart and Owndays sharing the same set of values centered around enriching customers’ lives, caring for people in our communities, as well as continuous learning, and we also have very complementary skill sets,” said Peyush Bansal, Co-Founder, and Group CEO at Lenskart.

Lenskart with its 300 people engineering team, estimated to scale up to 500 people in FY23, will help build a stronger online and Omni experience for Owndays.

The company said it will continue its rapid expansion in India and South East Asia to serve the mass to mid-premium segments while Owndays scales swiftly to cater to premium segments.

“Owndays has been recognized as the eyewear brand of choice across multiple countries in Asia ever since we opened our first overseas store, in Singapore in 2013,” said Tanaka.

Founded in 2010, Lenskart ships over 10 million pairs of eyewear every year and has over 20 million app downloads, 300 home eye test representatives as well as over 1,100 stores across India, Singapore,and Dubai.

Lenskart is backed by Falcon Edge Capital, SoftBank, KKR, Temasek, Premji Invest and Kedaara Capital, among others.

Owndays has around 460 stores across 13 markets in the region.

Meanwhile, Lenskart takes a big leap into the fashion landscape through its collaboration with JJ Valaya for the campaign of his all-new bridge-to-luxury brand, JJV. With this, the brand aims to lead and cement its place in the space of fashion and bring forward its trend specific product offerings.

“For 3 wonderful decades, JJ Valaya has been a part of people’s weddings and celebrations and indeed, there is no greater feeling! This year, as we celebrate our 30th year in fashion as a luxury occasion wear brand, we take a step further into our world with the launch of our all-new bridge-to-luxury brand, JJV and there couldn’t be a better fit than Eyewear designed by Lenskart for our debut campaign. In keeping with the vision to keep style effortless, accessible yet bold enough to make a statement that reflects individuality, the collaboration worked beautifully”, adds a representative for the House of Valaya.

Lenskart aims to tap into a trendy audience to reframe eyewear from a functional product to a form of personal expression, in keeping with its mission to transform the way people see and experience the world.

Sasha Chhetri, AVP, Marketing at Lenskart said, “We’re thrilled to announce our collaboration with JJ Valaya as it is the perfect first step towards highlighting the design-first aspect of our products. Along with technology, fashion is our key focus towards providing our audience with a stylish product range, that is diverse in nature so that each person can flaunt their personality through our eyewear.

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