CO WATERFORD, Ireland - The world's largest supplier of contact lenses is to expand its base in County Waterford, in Ireland, where it has operated for more than four decades.
Bausch + Lomb, a 168-year old company, headquartered in Quebec, Canada, is to invest €90 million to expand manufacturing operations at its Waterford facility.
The investment is expected to generate 130 additional jobs when production commences in 2023 and will provide the Waterford facility with additional capacity to meet expected demand for its Biotrue ONEday range of contact lenses. In addition, approximately 150 additional workers are expected to be employed in the construction phase of the expansion.
The investment will further strengthen the Waterford plant's position in supporting Bausch + Lomb's efforts to increase market share in the contact lens market. This follows a similar announcement in November 2018 in which the company announced it was investing to increase contact lens manufacturing capacity at its sites in Waterford and Rochester, N.Y. by adding multiple production lines at these two sites to support the manufacture of its innovative daily disposable silicone hydrogel (SiHy daily) contact lenses.
Construction of the Waterford facility, announced in 2018, has now been completed, and production of the company's latest contact lenses, Bausch + Lomb INFUSE, will start by the end of this year. The Waterford site currently employs more than 1,500 people, accounting for more than 12 percent of the company's 12,000 global workforce.
"I warmly welcome this news that Bausch + Lomb is investing a further €90 million in Waterford, creating 130 new jobs for the county. The company has already invested significantly in the South East region, employing over 1,500. This decision reaffirms that commitment and is a great vote of confidence in Waterford and all it has to offer. I thank Bausch + Lomb for the continuing commitment to Ireland," Tanaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment Leo Varadkar, TD said Wednesday.
Mark Hennessy, Site Lead, Bausch + Lomb, Waterford said: "Our Vision is to be the Global Leader in Contact Lens Innovation and Manufacturing, and this latest investment will enable the Waterford facility to meet the growing demand for our very successful Biotrue ONEday range of daily disposable contact lenses. The Biotrue lens was developed by the team in Waterford and supported by our commercial colleagues around the world, and it continues to grow in our U.S., European and Asian markets."
"We recently celebrated the 40th anniversary of the establishment of Bausch + Lomb Waterford, and the decision to make this significant investment in Waterford was influenced by our track record in providing high-quality products and excellent customer service to markets around the globe."
IDA Ireland CEO Martin Shanahan said: "IDA Ireland has partnered with Bausch + Lomb for many years. We are delighted with the company's decision to further expand its manufacturing operations at the Waterford facility, creating 130 jobs. It demonstrates Bausch + Lomb's continued commitment to the South East region, in which, this year, it celebrates its 40th anniversary. This expansion is a welcome addition to the South East Region's thriving MedTech cluster."
Recruitment for the new jobs will begin in 2022. However, the facility currently has vacant positions in operations, engineering, quality, and other disciplines.
To view these open positions please visit the link below and click on IE - Waterford in the "Location" drop down menu:
One of the oldest continually operating companies in the United States today, Bausch + Lomb traces its roots to 1853, when John Jacob Bausch, a German immigrant, set up a tiny optical goods shop in Rochester, New York. When he needed more money to keep the business going, Bausch borrowed $60 from his good friend, Henry Lomb. Bausch promised that if the business grew, Lomb would be made a full partner. The business did grow and the partnership was formed.
In the early years, Bausch + Lomb manufactured revolutionary rubber eyeglass frames as well as a variety of optical products that required a high degree of manufacturing precision. By 1903, the firm had been issued patents for microscopes, binoculars, and even a camera shutter based on the eye's reaction to light...
A History of Innovation
In the 1900's, Bausch + Lomb continued to demonstrate its place at the forefront of technological innovation for optical products. The company produced the first optical quality glass made in America, developed ground-breaking sunglasses for the military in World War I, and created the lenses used on the cameras that took the first satellite pictures of the moon. In 1971, Bausch + Lomb introduced the first soft contact lenses and is still the largest global provider of eye care products.
Although products and times have changed, the company says it still adheres to the legacy of dedication to innovation, quality, and craftsmanship established by John Jacob Bausch and Henry Lomb. In August 2013, Bausch + Lomb was taken over in an $8.57 billion deal by Valeant Pharmaceuticals International, Inc., a Canadian company, which has since changed its name to Bausch Health Companies Inc.,