VisionPlus in conversation with Joseph Tallier, Chief Executive Officer, Ogi Eyewear discussing the brand’s past, present and future innovations, techniques and a lot more…
VisionPlus team in a detailed discussion with Ogi Eyewear’s, Joseph Tallier getting his interesting insights on the brand’s future plans for the global market as they see the world as one!
VisionPlus Magazine: Do give us a little insight into Ogi Eyewear as a company.
Joseph Tallier: Ogi Eyewear was started by four individuals, each one with a lot of experience on the optical side of the business i.e., one optometrist, two opticians and a wholesale expert. So the four of them between had a 100 years experience in the optical market with different approaches, looking forward through different languages. Through the language of buyers, through the language of the doctor, through the language of the wholesale distribution model.
So what we are able to accomplish is to meet the needs of the end consumer, the style, fit, price point and quality. So that, in short, is the background of Ogi Eyewear. We come with a rich history of over 100 years of experience.
VP: What differentiates Ogi Eyewear from the others?
JT: Ogi Eyewear is very different from its competitors. Its philosophy, style, quality, innovation and values. We, at Ogi Eyewear, want to give extraordinary value to the end consumer. Our main focus is looking at delivering the best possible eyewear for the price the end consumer pays. We want a frame that people are proud to wear that looks fantastic and it is better quality than anything else in the market in this segment.
VP: In a lot of regions around the world, European brands are more popular than American ones. So how does Ogi Eyewear as a brand from the USA plan to reach out to opticians and consumers?
JT: I look at the world as one. I think we are all part of the same globe. So just because we are at the farthest point from India, UAE or Singapore does not mean anything. We have the same features, demands, wants and desires. We have the same hierarchy of needs, food, shelter and clothing. And we all want better food, shelter, clothing and glasses!
So when I look at the world in a way that internet has brought together, we are really close. We are just a click away from one another.
The only reason that some of these brands from the Europe are in India, UAE or Singapore is because they are closer to the region. The brands have easier access to them. But we feel the way internet has made the world a smaller place, it will not take much time for the world to see how special we are.
VP: In terms of branding, do you think Ogi Eyewear would be localising for Dubai, UAE, Singapore or is it going to be American all along?
JT: We are very proud of our American heritage. And we are going to do business the American way thinking of the Indian consumers. Clearly, we have to modify our styling or fit and some of our colour palettes, but we won’t modify our pedigree which is extraordinary quality. There is a very high taste in India, UAE and Singapore and they require high manufacturing so that the community will really understand how great the frames really are and I believe, they are going to embrace it in a bigger way. They just need more exposure to it.
VP: You come out to be a hands-on leader. Tell us a bit about you, your background and your vision for the future of Ogi eyewear.
JT: Only the best kind of leaders are hands-on! It is to do with what I do and not say. I believe in consensus, team building and togetherness. It is us together to service the population and it is not about ‘me’, it is always about the ‘we’.
You are stronger when you are together. So my theory on management is really consensus building and team building. It is my job to interpret the future but together we execute it. The success then is not mine, it’s ours.
VP: Something about the future of Ogi Eyewear, how do you plan to take it ahead?
JT: The future of Ogi Eyewear is unlimited. The future is only unlimited the to the limit of your beliefs. We are looking to adapt the changes in the world and we understand that technology plays a role. So we are planning to mould ourselves as the future unfolds. And we are never afraid to changes course because the world is making a shift.
VP: Do you think all your brands have a market for these regions or do you think there are specific ones?
JT: As I mentioned, the world has become so small. When you look at global brands the world has become so much singular. It is just one market and that is the world market. We look at the world as one and the differences are not as big as you think.
VP: You are one of the earliest supporters of YouAndEyeOnline.com. What do you see as the potential of the platform?
JT: First of all, we love the people who run it. We believe people are the strongest assets in a company.
I think it is a brilliant platform where you can bring information quicker and faster to the remote areas of the world. You are visionaries in the way you are looking at things. You are bringing down barriers and you are seeing the world as Ogi Eyewear sees.
VP: The future of retailing, brick and mortar vs online?
JT: Retailing is becoming much more experiential. Retailers have to change the way they are selling goods through the brick and mortar stores. They have to make the environment more exciting, they have to make it attractive in terms of cross marketing and cross selling.
Online is definitely growing. Every company has its own online strategies but when it comes to spectacles and lenses.. It is very difficult. The technology will be available for the next 30-40 years but would you go to a doctor to get your cardiac exam or have it diagnosed online. Of course, you can look at the symptoms online but you will have to see a doctor. Same with the eyes. The fit is so important, the measure, the height of the focal where pupil is set. Technology as much as people say will not be doing this.
So there’s going to be a marriage between the online retail and brick & mortar. Brick and mortar has to make the experience more exciting than the pragmatic selling of glasses.