Johnson & Johnson Vision Care, Inc. began in 1959 as Frontier Contact Lenses, a small firm in Buffalo, NY that manufactured hard contact lenses. As the company grew, it opened a branch in Jacksonville, Florida (USA) headed by Dr. Seymour Marco, an optometrist and a visionary. In the 1970s Dr. Marco developed etafilcon A, a hydrogel material that broke new ground in the contact lens industry by allowing for the creation of a soft contact lens.
Johnson & Johnson acquired Frontier Contact Lenses in 1981, and soon after renamed the company VISTAKON®. A few years later, VISTAKON® secured a patent for a proprietary manufacturing process called Stabilized Soft Molding (SSM) that set the stage for one of the biggest launches in vision care history. In 1987, VISTAKON introduced ACUVUE® in the United States, the worlds’ first mass-market disposable contact lens. Soon after, the product began to sell globally and in 1993 became the number one selling contact lens worldwide.
The 1990s brought another market breakthrough with the introduction of 1-DAY ACUVUE®, providing proven eye health benefits of sterile lenses every day.i Global expansion also began as offices opened in Japan, Brazil, the United Kingdom, and Singapore. In 1999, the worldwide business became Johnson & Johnson Vision Care, although the VISTAKON® name was maintained by the U.S. business. The company now sells contact lenses in more than 96 countries around the world.
Johnson & Johnson Vision Care, Inc. has continued its track record of growth and innovation, and is the world’s leading manufacturer of disposable contact lenses. The company team has a robust clinical agenda that has translated into a wide range of novel products to meet patient needs. A quarter of a century after revolutionizing the contact lens industry with the introduction of the first disposable soft contact lens, Johnson & Johnson Vision Care, Inc. continues its course to bring healthy vision to everyone, everywhere, every day through new technologies and innovative products.