STAAR Surgical Announces Milestone Strategic Agreement in U.S. with IQ Laser Vision

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Agreement is Largest Commitment to EVO ICL™ in the U.S.

LAKE FOREST, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- STAAR Surgical Company (NASDAQ: STAA), a leading developer, manufacturer and marketer of the EVO family of Implantable Collamer® Lenses (EVO ICL™) for myopia, astigmatism and presbyopia, today announces another milestone achieved on its U.S. Highway 93 go-to-market program – a strategic agreement with IQ Laser Vision, a leader in providing clear vision to clients with locations across California and Texas, and a top EVO ICL practice in North America.

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Tom Frinzi, Chair of the Board, President and CEO, STAAR Surgical (Left) and Dr. Robert T. Lin, founder and surgeon, IQ Laser Vision (Right). (Photo: Business Wire)

Tom Frinzi, Chair of the Board, President and CEO, STAAR Surgical (Left) and Dr. Robert T. Lin, founder and surgeon, IQ Laser Vision (Right). (Photo: Business Wire)

IQ Laser Vision will make EVO ICL lenses a primary option for patients seeking surgical vision correction within the range of -3D to -20D, as part of its comprehensive refractive offering. IQ Laser Vision intends to nearly double its volume in EVO ICLs over the course of the next 12 months. To support the transition and ramp up, STAAR Surgical and IQ Laser Vision will collaborate on marketing, education, practice development and clinical support activities to further elevate awareness of EVO ICL and substantially increase the availability of the lenses to all qualified patients across the IQ Laser Vision Family of Practices, which includes Scott Hyver Visioncare, Ellis Eye, and Mattioli Vision Professionals.

Tom Frinzi, Chair of the Board and CEO of STAAR Surgical, stated, “With the rapid growth of EVO ICL in the U.S., against the backdrop of a continued decline in laser vision correction procedures, it’s becoming clear that lens-based procedures like EVO ICL are the future of refractive vision correction. STAAR Surgical made a strategic pivot late last year to shape that future – with a program that works double-duty to accelerate growth in leading EVO-ready practices, while working alongside them to test, learn and invest in the strategic drivers of that growth. Today, we’re thrilled to announce that IQ Laser Vision has joined our U.S. Highway 93 program with the largest agreement for EVO ICL in the U.S. thus far. Dr. Lin is a renowned leader and pioneer in refractive eye surgery having performed over 70,000 refractive procedures and is one of the most experienced ICL surgeons in North America, having implanted over 1,000 ICLs over the past 12 months. Dr. Lin’s deep and expansive expertise across refractive surgery makes his decision to offer EVO ICL as a primary option now all the more meaningful.”

Corneal laser-based refractive procedures, like LASIK and SMILE, work by removing corneal tissue to thin and reshape the cornea to correct a patient’s vision. EVO ICL is a lens-based refractive procedure, which works by implanting a lens in the eye to correct a patient’s vision while preserving the cornea. Both lens and laser-based methods are safe and effective and have their place in a comprehensive refractive offering. EVO delivers excellent visual results across a broad range of correction with built-in UV protection and proven long-term stability. Further, EVO is a reversible lens implant, allowing surgeons to future-proof a patient’s eyes if age-related vision correction is needed down the road.

“At the IQ Laser Vision Family of Practices, our mission has always been to transform lives by delivering clear vision, and we are extremely grateful to have helped many patients including our own family members, celebrities, and athletes achieve that transformation,” said Robert T. Lin, MD, founder and surgeon, IQ Laser Vision. “Refractive practices are at a critical juncture – with interest in corneal-based laser procedures waning, and contact lens- and eyeglass-wearers reluctant to commit to a more permanent solution – it’s time to consider a new path forward.”

Dr. Lin continued, “While studies show that refractive vision correction may be safer than long-term use of contact lenses, patients have been shying away from corneal-based laser vision correction (such as LASIK) due to a variety of factors. I believe EVO ICL is a way to re-invigorate the refractive surgery category as a whole. With surgeons across Europe and Asia using EVO ICL across the diopter range, and many offering ICL as the first-line treatment, it’s clear to me that we need to get the word out in the U.S. I am grateful to STAAR for recognizing this immense need, and working with us as we help patients achieve their dream of visual freedom.”

For more information about EVO Implantable Collamer® Lenses, please visit https://evoicl.com.

References

  1. EVO/EVO+ ICL DFU and PIB.
  2. Martinez-Plaza E, Lopez-Miguel A, Lopez-De La Rosa A, et al. Effect of the EVO+ Visian Phakic Implantable Collamer Lens on Visual Performance and Quality of Vision and Life, Am J Ophthalmol 2021;226: 117–125.
  3. Naves, J. Carracedo, G. Cacho-Babillo, I. Diadenosine Nucleotid Measurements as Dry-Eye Score in Patients After LASIK and ICL Surgery. Presented at American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery (ASCRS) 2012.

About STAAR Surgical

STAAR, which has been dedicated solely to ophthalmic surgery for over 40 years, designs, develops, manufactures and markets implantable lenses for the eye. These lenses are intended to provide visual freedom for patients, lessening or eliminating the reliance on glasses or contact lenses. All of these lenses are foldable, which permits the surgeon to insert them through a small incision. STAAR’s lens used in refractive surgery is called an Implantable Collamer® Lens or “ICL,” which includes the EVO ICL™ product line. More than 3,000,000 ICLs have been sold to date and STAAR markets these lenses in over 75 countries. To learn more about the ICL go to: EVOICL.com. Headquartered in Lake Forest, CA, the company operates manufacturing and packaging facilities in Aliso Viejo, CA, Monrovia, CA and Nidau, Switzerland. For more information, please visit the Company’s website at www.staar.com.

About IQ Laser Vision

Established in 1999 by Dr. Robert T. Lin, IQ Laser Vision is recognized as the most experienced EVO ICL and ZEISS SMILE vision correction center in North America. It has formed esteemed partnerships with Mattioli Vision Professionals, Scott Hyver Vision Care, and Ellis Eye by IQ Laser Vision, collectively known as the IQ Laser Vision Network. These collaborations underscore its commitment to ophthalmological excellence. The team at IQ Laser Vision consists of board-certified surgeons with a collective experience exceeding 60 years, having successfully completed over 300,000 vision correction procedures. The clinic's state-of-the- art facilities are equipped with the latest eye care technology, including the advanced ArcScan Technology. With 18 locations across major U.S. cities including Los Angeles, Irvine, San Francisco, San Jose, and Houston, IQ Laser Vision ensures comprehensive accessibility to its services. For more information or to book a free consultation, please visit the company’s website at iqlaservision.com.

Important Safety Information for EVO ICL

The EVO Visian ICL lens is intended to correct/reduce nearsightedness between -3.0 D up to -20.0 D and treat astigmatism from 1.0 D to 4.0 D. If you have nearsightedness within these ranges, EVO Visian ICL surgery may improve your distance vision without eyeglasses or contact lenses. Because the EVO Visian ICL corrects for distance vision, it does not eliminate the need for reading glasses, you may require them at some point, even if you have never worn them before. Since implantation of the EVO Visian ICL is a surgical procedure, before considering EVO Visian ICL surgery you should have a complete eye examination and talk with your eye care professional about EVO Visian ICL surgery, especially the potential benefits, risks, and complications. You should discuss the time needed for healing after surgery. Complications, although rare, may include need for additional surgical procedures, inflammation, loss of cells from the back surface of the cornea, increase in eye pressure, and cataracts. You should NOT have EVO Visian ICL surgery if your doctor determines that 1) the shape of your eye is not appropriate, 2) you do not meet the minimum endothelial cell density for your age at the time of implantation, 3) you have moderate to severe glaucoma, 4) your vision is not stable; or 5) if you are pregnant or nursing.

For additional information with potential benefits, risks and complications please visit evoicl.com.

Safe Harbor

All statements that are not statements of historical fact are forward-looking statements, including statements about any of the following: any financial projections (including sales), plans, strategies, and objectives of management for 2024 and beyond or prospects for achieving such plans, expectations for sales, revenue, margin, expenses or earnings, and any statements of assumptions underlying any of the foregoing, including those relating to financial performance in the upcoming quarter, fiscal year 2024 and beyond. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated by such forward-looking statements include risks and uncertainties related to global economic conditions, as well as the factors set forth in the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 29, 2023 under the caption “Risk Factors,” which is on file with the Securities and Exchange Commission and available in the “Investor Information” section of the company’s website under the heading “SEC Filings.” We disclaim any intention or obligation to update or revise any financial projections or forward-looking statement due to new information or events. These statements are based on expectations and assumptions as of the date of this press release and are subject to numerous risks and uncertainties, which could cause actual results to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking statements. The risks and uncertainties include the following: global economic conditions; the impact of COVID-19; the discretion of regulatory agencies to approve or reject existing, new or improved products, or to require additional actions before or after approval, or to take enforcement action; international trade disputes and substantial dependence on demand from Asia; and the willingness of surgeons and patients to adopt a new or improved product and procedure.

We intend to use our website as a means of disclosing material non-public information and for complying with our disclosure obligations under Regulation FD. Such disclosures will be included on our website in the ‘Investor Relations’ sections. Accordingly, investors should monitor such portions of our website, in addition to following our press releases, SEC filings and public conference calls and webcasts.

Investors & Media Brian Moore Vice President, Investor Relations and Corporate Development (626) 303-7902, Ext. 3023 bmoore@staar.com

Source: STAAR Surgical Company

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