By Quentin Johnson
1930s - US Army Air Corps Lieutenant General asked New York Medical Equipment Company Bausch & Lomb to design a pair of glasses for aviation to deflect glare at high Altitudes. A plastic frame green lensed prototype was developed called the “Anti-Glare” 1937- Anti Glare is remodeled with a metal frame and released for public sale and donned the name ‘The Aviator’. Ray-Ban is Born 1950s - Ray Ban escapes the military scene and goes pop culture with stars such as James Dean and Audrey Hepburn seen sporting the new WayFarer model (1952) in movies such as Rebel Without a Cause (1955) and later in Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1961). Ray- Ban becomes one of the most recognizable fashion accessories in history. 1960s – Ray-Ban is growing rapidly by expanding to 50 different styles for Men, Women, and Children by 1969. On top of appearing on the face of many famous movie actors the style reaches the music scene. 1970s - Ray Ban enters the market for prescription glasses and sportswear glasses. They also develop the “Ambermatic” lense that adapts to light and dark settings giving them a competitive edge in attracting the outdoor lifestyle audience 1980s – Ray Ban makes a 50,000 dollar a year deal with Unique Product Placement of Burbank California and Ray Ban sunglasses are seen in over 60 movies and television shows a year leading sales to reach 1.5 million annually. 1990s- With Ray-Ban continuing to be a Hollywood favorite, Luxottica Group Purchased the Bausch & Lomb eyewear business in 1999 for $640 million.
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- Spring '16