UnitedHealthcare Becomes First to Cover Warby Parker
Hip eyewear company Warby Parker is partnering with Minnetonka-based UnitedHealthcare to accept vision insurance for the first time ever.
The New York-based prescription eyeglasses retailer is known for sending several pairs of model glasses for customers to try on, and then selling frames and lenses for as low prices: often at just $95.
“Warby Parker and UnitedHealthcare will help more Americans access designer eyewear at affordable prices to help meet the eye-care needs of the people we serve,” Tom Wiffler, CEO of UHC’s specialty benefits unit, said in a statement. “We are grateful Warby Parker selected UnitedHealthcare to be its first in-network vision plan.
Until now, Warby Parker purchases could only be reimbursed as an out-of-network benefit. With the new deal, people with UHC’s vision plan can purchase glasses with only their co-pay.
“[We are] constantly exploring new ways to provide people access to affordable, high-quality and fashionable eyewear,” Warby Parker cofounder and CEO Dave Gilboa said. “We looking forward to working with UnitedHealthcare, nationwide, to enable millions of Americans to purchase their glasses at a fraction of the price they might pay through traditional channels.”
The company is one of only significant players in the eyewear business. The industry is dominated by Milan, Italy-based Luxottica, which controls nearly the entire market.
While the majority of its business takes place online, Warby Parker has a select number of brick-and-mortar spots located primarily in large cities. Minnesota has one location: a showroom inside Askov Finlayson, a men’s clothing store in Minneapolis’ North Loop neighborhood.