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Contact Lenses and Solutions in Eastern Europe

December 2019

Contact lenses and solutions is one of the largest eyewear categories in Eastern Europe. Its positive performance is driven by several factors: the increasing prevalence of optical disorders, ageing populations, rising disposable incomes, changing consumer lifestyles and fashion trends. The trend towards daily disposable lenses continues across the region, benefiting from their convenience of usage. Optical shops dominate distribution. The market is projected to register steady growth to 2024.

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Key Findings

Disposable lenses taking over the market from conventional lenses

Preference for DD contact lenses in Western Europe has increased, mainly due to greater comfort and hygiene over conventional lenses. With rising consumer awareness around calcium deposits, consumers prefer the healthier alternative of changing lenses every day. However, in light of their higher pricing, demand for more affordable frequent replacement lenses (FRP), that are replaced bi-weekly or monthly is also expected to rise.

Contact lens solutions losing market share as adoption of DD lenses rises

Consumer shift to DD lenses is hindering sales of contact lens solutions which has affected optical shops, depriving them of a crucial source of revenue as these are often sold as add-ons.

Growing internet retailing inducing decline in unit prices

Internet retailing has become the second largest retail channel for contact lenses and solutions. Competitive pricing and convenience have catalysed the growth of internet retailing, causing competition between internet retailers and optical shops, resulting in a drop in unit prices and benefiting the consumer.

High concentration in the market makes it difficult for new players to enter

The market for contact lenses and solutions is highly concentrated, with the top five players representing almost 60% of the region’s value sales in 2017. Leading players include Novartis AG, Johnson & Johnson Inc and Cooper Cos Inc, which leverage their strong brand recognition, marketing and R&D resources to maintain their positions.

New product developments to address digital strain

With the deterioration of eye health due to rising screen time, players are launching products to help combat these issues. For example, Biofinity Energys by CooperVision Italia Srl, launched in 2017, was the first contact lens to address eye tiredness and dryness caused by overworking on devices.



Key findings

Regional Overview

Eastern Europe shows good growth in 2019
Prospects in contact lenses and solutions remain positive
Frequent replacement lenses remains the largest category
The trend towards daily disposable lenses continues across the region
All markets see positive growth
Russia sees the highest absolute value growth
Optical shops dominate in Eastern Europe
The distribution landscape sees no major changes in 2019

Leading Companies and Brands

Top-ranked companies continue to stay competitive
Johnson & Johnson continues to be the regional leader
Russia is the key contact lenses and solutions market in Eastern Europe
Acuvue Oasys continues to lead sales in Eastern Europe

Forecast Projections

Russia will drive the region’s future growth
Contact lenses and solutions expected to see further growth

Country Snapshots

Russia: market context
Russia: competitive and retail landscape
Romania: market context
Romania: competitive and retail landscape
Poland: market context
Poland: competitive and retail landscape
Ukraine: market context
Ukraine: competitive and retail landscape


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