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Thread: Shared Ownership Lab Cooperative

  1. #1
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    Shared Ownership Lab Cooperative

    In a perfect world...

    As an independent, have you ever considered investing into a lab co-operative with shared ownership?

    You can be based anywhere in Canada and is open to both Optometrists and Opticians.

    As a shared owner, you would receive full access to most major lens brands and coatings, full lab services, plus private labeled products at a highly discounted rate, with profits distributed back to its owners (invested members) at year end based on usage commitment.

    Plus, as a member of the board, you get a say and make your own decisions via a voting process.

    This is a much better business model than a buying group where they have limited offerings, consume your additional vendor discounts as their service charge and make the decisions for you.

    Any thoughts and opinions?

  2. #2
    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Silver Supporter
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    Wow! I'd love to manage the lab with a hundred or so OD's and opticians making decisions.

  3. #3
    Manuf. Lens Surface Treatments
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    Redhot Jumper These types of labs have existed forever in Quebec............................

    These types of labs have existed forever in Quebec. There is only one left as far as I know, and is specialised in safety glasses, that is owned by a group of optometrists.

    I am not so sure if such a venture would be successful these days with more and more control of the supplies by the large corporations.

    There was a similar time period when I opened my own lab in 1964 when the optical trade was dominated by AO, B&L and Imperial Optical in Canada.
    Nobody wanted to sell us machinery, consumables as well as lenses. It was pure luck that at the time, Coburn just came out with the latest machines, in optical production equipment.

    Today with some even larger corporations that own from equipment manufacturers to lab supply companies I would see a similar situation that could make live miserable to such a venture.
    Chris Ryser
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    DLO. NA.IC.I.T.PO

    http://optochemicals.com............................. http://arcoatings.com

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    Who is going to run the place? Sounds like a recipe for disaster to me. 100 chefs is tough.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Don Gilman View Post
    Wow! I'd love to manage the lab with a hundred or so OD's and opticians making decisions.
    Sarcasm, great you're hired! The 'board' would make the major decisions just like any other company.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Craig View Post
    Who is going to run the place? Sounds like a recipe for disaster to me. 100 chefs is tough.
    One chief, with a few Indians underneath.

  7. #7
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    Why not work with an independent lab that is already in existence? That is our plan with our brand. Independent labs for independent ECP's.

  8. #8
    Master OptiBoarder rbaker's Avatar
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    If you share ownership you also have a share in the liabilities of the business. Be very careful.

  9. #9
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    hi, Chris. May i know the name of the lab that is specialize on sports and safety glasses you mentioned that is in Quebec?

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