Martin Moreaux takes things with passion. It's hard to move him from that adrenaline that runs through his bones. In every topic it addresses, there is a conviction of the thing going there.
He did it when, in 2006, he acquired the Soler Optic and launched the expansion of a well-Cordovan brand. Now it goes to e-commerce for glasses. It can be sent to a market, it's simpler and cheaper, but it hates without distortion. He wants his own place under two premises: to provide service and to guarantee accessibility.
"Opptica Soler was born in 1967, its founder pioneered the subject of contactology. In partnership with Voss, he created a brand that people over 60 still remember: Pupilent Soler. "he says.
"I remember perfectly.
"Then Julio Soler, the creator's son, continued with the lens and kept it in operation for many years, with the ups and downs of this country. He decided to sell, we met because I already had another business of this type, so we came to an agreement, I got the brand and the structure. Today, a grandson of the founder, Julito Soler, works here, which is an honor for me.
– Question zonza: How is it to sell glasses? Is it the same as any other business?
From the commercial point of view, yes, it is similar to any other activity. But it's a category where health is and that makes it different. There is a non-delegable social responsibility. Optics requires study, training and professionalization, but there is also a business process similar to any other.
– The lens is a kind of "commodity" and the picture is where the difference is made?
No, ophthalmic lenses are divided into monofocal, bifocal and progressive lenses. The first, the telescope to see from near or far, are goods. There are tables that are also in this category. This merchandise is the one that fights against the cheap telescope they sell on the street. But the industry has made great strides in the manufacture of lenses, especially progressive and multifocal lenses. In that there are laboratories that in Argentina invested a lot to make incredible products.
– Where is the business, in volume or in complexity?
-The optical item itself is of significant profitability. From the lenses to the frame. Each perspective applies its own pricing policy to this. Our criterion is to develop a business vision marked by volume, with the attention that the telescope must be accessible to those who need it for their health and that social works are carried out for free.
-I was addicted to the question of profitability …
-The profitability of which I speak has made Cordoba a place with a lot of optical competition, but with limited individual growth. This happened to Soler. When I accepted, I imposed a radical change, from commercial policy to image; everything We have evolved from one mouth to four locations. From two employees to 25, with a network of ophthalmologists in the interior through special arrangements.
– Is that what your hand is about young businessman and restless?
-And now the new mouth that is the digital channel: tiendasoler.com. First we sell sunglasses and frames. Two months ago, we incorporated the sale of prescription glasses, for which we had to apply a series of special tools. It was a big challenge.
I guess we're talking about prescription. How do they not miss him?
– Clear. To make a prescription for glasses you have to take the interpupillary distance to center the lenses and that was the subject. With two programmers and an engineer, we developed the system. The person enters, first chooses the frame, then we must attach the prescription of the ophthalmologist, and then attach a selfie with a card, the size of a credit card or carry on his forehead. This, through special software, allows us to obtain interpupillary distance. It's a fabulous process.
"Do you know anyone who applies that?"
-Not in Argentina. But in Europe and the United States it exists. So we make the telescope and send it to you by the parcel service. I'm a service nut. All orders that arrive before 14 depart at their destination on the same day. Audiences love it. We have areas of the country, Patagonia, for example, where we are often asked why they are regions with little optics or the distances to get some are long.
– How much does the online sale cost?
-At 50 percent of the revenue from one of our stores. It's very good for us. Especially if we take into account that the Soler brand in Cordoba is well known, but in San Juan it is not. We are doing an important brand work. What we do is disturbing. People are not accustomed to buying glasses online, so we must provide service.
– Myths and truths of having an online store: it's easy and cheap.
"Not at all. Neither easy nor cheap. The easiest and cheapest is to take a picture with a telescope's cell phone and send it to a market. But when you build a zero platform, like ours, it's expensive, takes time, requires many processes and people. Programmers, designers, photographers. All this generates costs, time and delays. It is the same as setting up a physical business, a difficult job.
– In the glasses business there are big wholesale channels where everything happens?
"I can say there are no monopolies in the industry. There are many players and offers available in national and international laboratories. With suppliers, I always accepted that we should go hand in hand to expand the market.
– Are the sunglasses pure fashion?
– Thank God it's fashion. The telescope changed its presence in society. Before, for someone who needed them, they even got bullying for it.
– "Anteojito, four eyes …"
– Today celebrities are showing their glasses and this has changed the social criteria. We are not even close to what happens in the European market, where the telescope is part of the fashion world. They change their glasses every season. I have a brother in Sweden, easy to use seven pairs per year. But this is part of the criteria applied in eye care.
"Damn it, the glasses they sell on the street are so bad?"
"I should say yes, but it has everything. The point is people think they solve a problem. Some even have a UV filter. We would be foolish if we did not see that we have to add them to the supply of the item. We would not be aware of the reality of the people. I return to the same thing: for this reason, the telescope must be accessible.
Was the sale reduced by the crisis?
Yes, against inflation fell. We were. The rise in the dollar hit prices because the inputs are imported, in addition to the finished products that come directly from outside.
"I thought, but I will not do it. Today all the weapons are in digital terrain, the world is heading towards that.
– Is coverage between social and prepaid jobs very different?
Yes, each one applies its policy. For me, the coverage is still very low and limited. They achieve very basic things. Some even do not cover anything. Daspu, for example, has huge coverage. At Pami, we present a project based on the current retiree, not the one that existed 50 years ago.
– How would it be?
"That image of the retired couple with the woman knitting and the man throwing the bowls no longer exists. The current responsibility is very active. He's still working. They need another type of coverage for their glasses. Here we cover one hundred percent multifocal. They can not believe it.
A celestial: In the glasses
Name. Martin Moreaux.
Children. Tomás and Matías.
Business. Optic Soler.
Physical sales mouths. Four
Digital sale. shopsoler.com
Market. About 2,700 glasses per month.
Data. Anabella Ronzoni is a key person in the company.
Fan of. Belgrano.
telephone. (0351) 425-6021.
Email [email protected]
The original text of this article was published on 11/25/2018 in our print edition.