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The company has grown rapidly since, thriving with its joint venture partnership approach to eyecare. It hit the milestone of 100 stores in July 1988, 200 in 1993, 300 in 1995, 400 in 2000, 500 in 2003, 600 in 2004 and 700 in 2005. The first Irish store opened in 1990, the first Netherlands store opened in 1997, the first Swedish in 2004, and 2005 saw the first in Denmark and Norway. In 2006 the first store was opened in Spain and in 2007 the company began supplying in Australia and opened the first store in Finland. In January 2008 Dame Mary Perkins opened the 1000th store in Roosendaal, Holland followed by the launch on the first three Specsavers stores in Australia in March. By December there were 153 in Australia plus 10 in New Zealand.
Ireland's no. 1 optician (source: euromonitor January 2009 - market share by optician) reflects its position as market leader. Specsavers range includes Tommy Hilfiger, Red or Dead, Osiris, fcuk, Bench, Quiksilver, Roxy, Jasper Conran and Missoni. Our frames are developed using the latest innovative manufacturing and design techniques from the highest quality components and raw materials available. The full range of over 2,000 size and colour options is structured around a comprehensive features and benefits pricing structure starting from €29 through to €250. Our own lens manufacturing laboratories - three of the largest in Europe, supply the latest high-tech lenses in volume at the lowest possible cost. All Specsavers frames come with free Single Vision Pentax lenses as standard.
Specsavers is also the retail market leader in contact lenses, with it's own brand of easyvision monthly and daily disposable lenses and has also driven the use of continuous-wear lenses. Furthermore, Specsavers is the largest provider of home-delivery contact lenses in Europe through its Lensmail service.
Specsavers is bringing its core offers to its rapidly expanding hearing service, which is now doing for hearing what the retailer has already achieved in optics –dramatically reducing prices and waiting times and making audiology services more accessible for everyone. Specsavers is already the largest retail dispenser of digital hearing aids in the UK and offers a hearing service from over 400 locations, in Ireland our hearing service is available from over 15 stores.
The company continues to expand. From just two staff working at that table-tennis table, there are now more than 500 based at Specsavers' headquarters in Guernsey and around 17,000 worldwide. The company has more than 1500 stores across the Channel Islands, UK, Ireland, the Netherlands, Scandinavia, Spain Australia and New Zealand.