Forbes Top 25 Disruptor #14: Warby Parker
An eyewear company may not sound like the most disruptive type of brand out there, but US based Warby Parker managed to transform the eyeglasses industry in the US by creating affordable glasses that could be bought online.
Before Warby Parker came about, the eyewear industry in the US was dominated by a single company, Luxottica, who own the majority of eyewear brands along with more than 7,000 retail stores. Luxottica also owns the licences for many of the popular designers. A pair of glasses from Luxottica cost hundreds of dollars and there were no more affordable options for consumers who wanted high quality eyewear.
Warby Parker found a way to make and sell glasses for a fraction of the price by doing away with many of the non-essential costs like licencing fees (they design their glasses in house), ordering their own materials and selling directly to consumers through their website and retail stores. They also have a policy that with each pair of glasses sold, another pair is given to someone in need.
Their low prices, convenience and corporate social responsibility all tap into common customer values to make Warby Parker incredibly successful in the US.
Note – this blog is part of a series titled – 25 Disruptive Brands