Rodenstock Asia Distribution Partners is part of Rodenstock Global Distribution Partners. Yantri Waldi is currently responsible for 15 countries in Asia, based in Bangkok Thailand. He reports directly to the head of Global Distribution Partners at HQ in Munich Germany
Yantri Waldi (YW): Fortunately, I have been involved in several important breakthroughs in the ophthalmic lens industry. One of the most revolutionary steps was when Rodenstock launched the world’s first Individual-Lens-Technology in the year 2000. ILT® is a patented technology for the production of prescription lenses in one fabrication step which promised enormous productivity gains.
I am now responsible for 15 countries across Asia. It is a really interesting experience to deal with diverse countries with different levels of education and infrastructure.
VP: How has this experience helped you with your profile at Rodenstock?
YW: My extensive experience in the ophthalmic industry, not only with lenses but also eyewear and ophthalmic instruments, has certainly helped me to contribute towards Rodenstock business development in Asia.
VP: You have been associated with Rodenstock for more than a decade, what are the changes that you have noticed in the brand and its identity in the region.
YW: Over time the brand focused more tightly on technical aspects but at the same time combined function and innovation with lifestyle. This makes Rodenstock, a heritage brand, more contemporary and ensures customer satisfaction.
VP: Moving on to the South East Asia region, tell us a little about the new lens technologies introduced by Rodenstock in the region and how are they faring?
YW: Rodenstock has a unique approach, called the ‘System of Better Vision’. With this, Rodenstock offers a comprehensive concept from a single manufacturer, consisting of high-tech ophthalmic lenses, high-quality spectacle frames, innovative consultation and measurement tools and first-rate service for opticians.
We focus on Rodenstock’s unique selling proposition such as our patented Eye Lens Technology (EyeLT®), the Solitaire® Protect Plus coating family, the ColorMatic IQ® technology and our sophisticated lens consulting and measurement tools. This makes it possible for spectacles wearers to exploit 100 percent of their personal vision potential.
The Rodenstock lens product categorisation enables opticians to easily select the most suitable lenses for each of their customer. As a result, every customer finds the optimum lens to meet their most unique demand. Therefore Rodenstock lenses are perceived as more than their money’s worth by those who experience them.
VP: Rodenstock has always emphasised on personalisation and customisation when it comes to catering to the eyewear demands of the customer, how has this USP helped you to popularise your brand amongst the opticians and the end-user?
YW: We believe that every person should be treated individually in order to exploit their individual vision potential.
We are fully aware that a good pair of lenses results from an expert optician who recommends the best option to the wearer. Therefore, we continuously emphasise the importance of education and training towards opticians. Because of our technological know-how in optics, this has been appreciated by opticians.
VP: Elaborate a little about Rodenstock’s breakthrough EyeLT® (Eye Lens Technology) and its prominence in the optical markets all over the globe.
YW: Rodenstock introduced EyeLT® (Eye Lens Technology) in 2011. At the time I believed our competitors would soon follow with a similar technology. It is surprising that after 5 years, no other lens manufacturer is able to deliver the same level that an EyeLT® lens has to offer.
EyeLT® is a revolutionary concept for better vision, combining various aspects of the eye-lens system. The EyeModel® is based on the precise physiological description of the viewing-process at the change from far to near vision. For the first time, it is possible to implement different cylinder values and cylinder axis for far and near viewing
distances in PAL.
The holistic success concept EyeLT® is comprised of the components EyeModel®, Personal EyeModel® and DNEye®. Through its special formula, the EyeModel® technology achieves up to 25 percent better vision in the near and intermediate range without any additional measurement. In addition, the Personal EyeModel® takes the individual near refraction into consideration and achieves up to 40 percent better vision. Through the comprehensive, high-precision analysis of the entire vision system through the DNEye® Scanner, high order aberrations are also fed into the lens calculation. At the end, the correction lens is as individual as the spectacles wearer DNA.
VP: From what we understand, Rodenstock uses an integrated approach with lens as well as eyewear included in its portfolio. Please talk about the advantages of the integrated approach and how has it helped Rodenstock strengthen its position.
YW: Rodenstock is the only manufacturer offering the perfect symbiosis of high-precision lenses and timeless elegant frames, embedded in a one-of-a-kind ‘System of Better Vision’.
When we produce a pair of lenses we take into account eyewear and when we produce eyewear we also take into account ophthalmic lenses. This perfect symbiosis is clearly expressed in the Rodenstock claim, ‘See better.
VP: Unlike its competitors, Rodenstock has always focused on working through independent distribution partners. Please tell us a little about this strategy and how has it helped you to reach out to your end customers in a better way.
YW: Professional independent partners know their country very well and have close relationship with opticians through years of business development. The most important aspect of success in working with independent partners is their strong focus. Many have separate units dedicated to Rodenstock only. Supported by the Rodenstock training system and methods, these ‘Rodenstock men’ feel almost like our own employees.
Supply chain management could pose a challenge when working with independent partners, especially when they are not equipped with certified Rx lab facilities. Relying on Rx exports from Germany and Single Vision Fully Finished stock could be a disadvantage in terms of lead time and cost structure.
However, Rodenstock is the key player offering so-called Free Form Franchise Labs with design and technology transfer. Through lab certification process, equipped with Rodenstock unique Free Form Measurement device and Lab Management system, a local lab partner will be able to produce Rodenstock lenses within Rodenstock quality standard requirement. This type of cooperation has proven beneficial for local lab partners who are strongly supported by Rodenstock in their
Rx lab operation.
VP: Any message for our readers…
YW: Unlike any other developing region, the Asian end-customers tend to spend more time looking at eyerwear, followed by only a short discussion on lenses. In the end they mostly base their decision on the price. Ironically, a better vision as the ultimate destination is resulted from the suitable lenses.
This shows the importance for a spectacles wearer to spend a little bit more time and effort on lenses in order to achieve the most comfortable vision. Just imagine how much better your eyes will feel with Rodenstock lenses helping you see comfortably all day long. This is priceless for those who ever experienced it.