There is no reason that when your eyes get worse and you need an updated prescription that you should have to buy new frames. The unfortunate reality is that most companies don’t re-lens your frames and you are stuck paying bug bucks for another pair of glasses that include new frames and lenses. Thankfully, Lensabl is fixing this problem by offering an affordable option to get a new prescription fitted into any frame all without leaving your home.
LA TechWatch chatted with cofounder Andy Bilinsky about the origins and inspiration for the company and where it’s going.
Tell us about the product or service.
Lensabl is the most simple and most affordable way to get new prescription lenses in any frame. Select your lenses, send us your frame, and we will make brand new lenses to your exact specs, fit them into your frames, and send them directly back to you.
How is it different?
Currently no brand agnostic lens replacement services exist. Lensabl is the first of its kind. Lensabl counts opticians as well as optical retailers like Lenscrafters as its competition.
What market are you attacking and how big is it?
We are attacking the prescription lens market. In 2013, prescription lenses were a $11B+ marketing for us adults alone.
What is the business model?
We charge customers for lenses they select.
Are customers provided a doctor that you can contact about your specific prescription and eye issues?
Customers are not provided a doctor, they are prompted to submit a valid prescription received from a doctor. In the coming months, lensabl will introduce an online eye exam so that customers do not need to see an in person doctor.
Tell us a little about your background and what inspired the business?
We previously created and ran a direct to consumer online eyewear brand. We sold frames primarily, and later introduced prescription lenses as a low cost add on for our frames. I have extensive experience in startup ecommerce companies and Mike (cofounder Mike Rahim) previously ran a digital agency creating websites.
Tell us what building your company in LA has been like?
Building our company in LA has been great. The creativity in the startup scene in LA is through the roof, and the marketing channels we have had access to like influencers by being based here has been extremely helpful. Also it’s great to have a very tight knit, yet accessible investor scene within a few miles of our office.
What are the milestones that you plan to achieve within six months?
In the next six months we plan to scale our customer base, introduce an online eye exam, become an out of service insurance acceptor, and partner with online eyewear sellers to enable them to offer prescription lenses to their customers.
If you could be put in touch with one investor in the community who would it be and why?
Troy Carter. We respect Troy and his success very much. He has invested in innovative companies and also wears prescription glasses. We believe he would understand the problem we are solving very well and could offer great advise and experience for us.
What does being “Made in LA” mean to you and your company?
We are proud to be a LA-based company. We feel inspired by the rest of the LA startup community and have met other great entrepreneurs by being so close in proximity. We are part of an innovative group of companies here in la that are looking to disrupt traditional industries and we feel that the LA community has helped inspire us to go after our dream.
What else can be done to promote early stage entrepreneurship in Los Angeles?
Just the tight knit community that has evolved around entrepreneurship and promoting the success of lots of LA based companies that didn’t get the love they deserved early on, shows that anything is possible here in LA and there is a supportive community that can help you reach your dreams if you’re willing to put in the effort.
Do you think LA will land the Olympics in 2024?
We sure hope so!