The alliance of Essel and Silor, with their roots in companies created in 1849 and 1931 respectively, gave Essilor a solid foundation for growth, a set of fundamental values and a tradition of product quality and innovation. These key assets have been developed and strengthened over the years.
Essel and Silor each contributed innovative technologies, in particular, the Varilux progressive lens was invented by Société des Lunetiers (Essel) in 1959 and the Orma 1000 plastic lens by LOR (Silor) in the same year. Innovation remains one of the pillars of the Group’s strategy today: Essilor devotes 150 millions euros on research and development and launches more than 200 new products a year.
The mission to improve eyesight was explicitly part of the 1972 merger agreement and continues to drive the Group’s mission. Employees lead many actions around the world including the Essilor Vision Foundation, which was established in 1972, and has provided examinations to more than 70,000 children as well as more than 15,000 pairs of eyeglasses.
Around 25 per cent of the Group’s employees are shareholders of the company.