Wellpoint to acquire 1-800 Contacts

WellPoint Inc., the Indianapolis-based parent licensee of Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield of Wisconsin, announced it has entered into an agreement to acquire 1-800 Contacts Inc., the largest direct-to-consumer retailer of contact lenses in the United States.

1-800 Contacts’ model is built on providing a superior customer experience and a wide selection of products at affordable prices. Consumers are able to order contacts and glasses using the technology – web, phone or mobile – that is most convenient for them.
“This acquisition strategically aligns with our efforts to capitalize on new opportunities for growth, and further diversifies the company’s revenue stream into the complementary and higher-margin eyewear business,” said Angela Braly, chair, president and chief executive officer of WellPoint. “1-800 Contacts has rapidly expanded through exceptional brand recognition, convenient customer service and an industry-leading direct-to-consumer model. We believe these assets will drive continued strong future growth in the eyewear marketplace and also significantly enhance our efforts to build trusted relationships with consumers across the entire country.”
“We are excited to be a part of not only one of the largest health benefits providers in the country, but also the most customer-focused,” said Jonathan Coon, chief executive officer and co-founder of 1-800 Contacts. “We look forward to joining WellPoint to serve the eyewear needs of our mutual customers. Our companies share common goals of providing consumers with the highest level of service and making the experience as simple as possible.”
Financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

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