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TRENDSPOTTING THE BIGGEST TRENDS IN SIGHT

WHO IS Z?

They’ve never known a world without video chat and instant messaging, and they do practically everything via an app. Gen Z (ages 7-22) is certain to be notably different from the generations before them, especially Millennials.

And, at 32% of the global population—larger than every other generation save for Boomers—they are also poised to become retail’s biggest customer base.

From The Center for Generational Kinetics (genhq.com ), The State of Gen Z 2018 report reveals more about Z—and what they like. —SUSAN TARRANT

They Smart Phones

95% of Gen Z has a phone

More than HALF use it 5+ hours a day (26% use it 10+ hours a day)

Preferred Apps by Situation

Instagram = follow brands

Snapchat = post/send a video or selfie

Facebook = create or check a group event

Seek Intel Before Spending

68% read at least 3 reviews before making a first-time purchase with their own money

16% read 9 or more reviews before doing so

46% follow more than 10 influencers on social media

Did You Know?

Gen Z prefers to follow brands on Instagram, and uses it 2.5x more than Facebook to do so. Interestingly, Millennials follow brands on Facebook twice as much as Instagram.

On Our Radar

BIENNALE X SPECS

Known for infusing its Berlin-based inspiration with handmade-in-Italy eyewear design, Kuboraum recently teamed up with Italian artist Gianni Politi for the 58th International Venice Art Exhibition—Biennale Arte 2019—which opened last month in Venice, Italy.

Unveiled at the floating city’s Ottica Urbani optical shop, the “Firmamento” project consists of 14 one-of-a-kind “masks” (Kuboraum’s innovative term for frames). Each mask, crafted of premium Mazzucchelli acetate, features an abstract, multicolored hand-painted creation by Politi and a certificate of authenticity signed by the artist. —KERRI ANN RAIMO

Gianni Politi’s art meets Kuboraum’s masks

PRESBYOPIA PARTY

Next year, 123 million of us will be presbyopic. But a new Alcon survey reveals only 30% of presbyopes see an O.D. to discuss their changing vision. Alcon’s Project Presbyopia is a fun, ongoing campaign to help ECPs raise awareness of presbyopia (including finding a better name for it) and attract more patients.

Alcon created a birthday card that ECPs can send to patients turning 40, offering them a free trial of multifocal contacts. There are also free educational resources via social media and traditional sources, and a consumer website: SeeNearAndFar.com .

—SUSAN TARRANT

POSH IN PARIS: Ami and Aya Suzuki, the twin-sister duo behind pop music sensation Amiaya, rocked Dior’s DiorSoLight1 sunglasses from Safilo while at Paris Fashion Week.
Photo: Getty Images

TrendSpotting Takeaways

Casa Luxottica

A stunning architectural blend of history and modern design, Casa Luxottica is Luxottica’s new North American headquarters and showroom, located at 1 W. 37 St. in New York City.

Like the company, Luxottica’s new digs are infused with rich history—the space was built more than 100 years ago as a garment factory, around the same time landmark buildings like the New York Public Library originated. Luxottica restored the façade of the building, while simultaneously incorporating interactive and high-tech elements—including floor-to-ceiling LED wall installations.

With a whopping 11 floors, Casa Luxottica is now home to more than 400 employees in wholesale and retail.

—KERRI ANN RAIMO

1 Luxottica restored the façade of the historic building, including the limestone moldings, crown pieces, and metal panels.

2 The “storefront” lobby hosts a massive LED wall installation that plays branded campaign images 24/7—it can be spotted from the street day and night.

3 Rick Gadd, president of Essilor of America (left), with Fabrizio Uguzzoni, president of Luxottica Wholesale North America

4 120 VIPs across the industry (including the EB team) attended the intimate Casa Luxottica housewarming reception coinciding with Vision Expo East. Here, Luxottica + Essilor attendees gather in the new space. From left: Steve Nussbaumer, Jane Lehman, Holly Gillentine, Chiara Bernardi, Rick Gadd, Fabrizio Uguzzoni, Maureen Cavanagh, Matthieu Tagnon, and Ryan Parker, O.D.

5 The dedicated Ray-Ban area of the showroom space—boasting branded meeting areas, product walls, and LED screens for campaign videos.

Want a virtual tour of Casa Luxottica?

EB got an exclusive look at its Digital Red Carpet buying space. Watch online: bit.ly/CasaLuxottica .