Menicon invests in contact lens manufacturing, R&D in Europe, Singapore

Menicon Co. Ltd. (Nagoya, Japan), which has pioneered the injection molding of contact lenses, has reorganized its non-Japanese entities to accelerate the introduction of new products and services to support its growing contact lens and related businesses. As part of the move, the company created a new global management team at its Menicon Holdings B.V. operation in the Netherlands All Menicon Group companies outside Japan will be unified under one entity, Menicon Holdings (Emmen, Netherlands), which will serve as Menicon's international headquarters and oversee all commercial operations outside Japan.Menicon Singpore manufacturing and R&D site

Menicon Holdings will build new headquarters and manufacturing plant in Emmen, as part of the move, with the facility slated to open in early 2013. Initially producing custom contact lenses for the European market, the new site will house Menicon's European R&D center. Menicon noted that the new plant will "significantly expand" the company's lathing and molding capacity for both gas-permeable and soft disposable lenses.

The new Menicon Holdings will have a dedicated R&D team to work with the company's global chief technology officer, Steve Newman, based in Singapore, to focus on bringing newly developed innovative products and services to the global markets.

Toshio Matsushima, Menicon CEO, noted that the company has accomplished a great deal over the past 10 years but added that the company's center of gravity remains largely in Japan. He noted that it has set a new corporate objective to become a $1 billion corporation globally by 2020.

In March, Menicon launched Menicon Singapore, a new R&D and manufacturing facility located. The 6000-sq-m facility is the company's first manufacturing site in the world producing daily disposable contact lenses. It will also house Menicon's first R&D center in Asia outside Japan.

The $97 million dollar facility, which the company says will feature quality control systems and unique manufacturing technology developed by Menicon, was officially opened on March 2 and has 79 employees. Among the numerous patents Menicon has around contact lenses is one for a method of molding an ophthalmic lens by polymerizing a liquid monomer composition in the mold cavity.


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