PARIS—Essilor (IW 1000/715), the world's biggest maker of corrective eye lenses, today said it has signed a deal to buy U.S. group Transitions Optical and Italian manufacturer Intercast for $1.73 billion.
Transitions Optical posted sales of $814 million in 2012. The company is a specialist in photochromic lenses, which darken automatically when exposed to certain types of light.
Essilor, a French group, said its purchase of 51% of the U.S. company would allow it to "boost expansion in the photochromic segment, which is growing twice as fast as the optical industry, notably in Asia, Latin America and Europe."
Essilor added that Intercast, which recorded revenues of $34 million in 2012, would add to its "positioning in the sun lens segment, which enjoys significant growth potential."
Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2013