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Oscar Wylee builds physical footprint following $3.5 million fine

Image of a person picking up a pair of glasses
The brand couldn’t back up its claims of donating glasses to people in need. Photo: Bigstock

Eyewear retailer Oscar Wylee has hit 100 stores across Australia and New Zealand, and is planning a further expansion across the region.

The latest store opened in Albany, New Zealand, following the rapid launch of 27 stores since January.

“We anticipate that our continued growth will create over 400 new jobs over the year and contribute to the recovering economy and job market,” said Oscar Wylee director of retail operations Kane Ford.

Ford also said the business is “always” looking for new locations to launch stores in throughout Australia and New Zealand.

The eyewear chain was fined $3.5 million in the Federal Court late last year after a judge found it had misled and deceived its customers into believing they were donating glasses to people in need on a one-for-one basis when, in truth, the figure was closer to one-in-ten.

The court called Oscar Wylee’s conduct during the five-year period a ‘betrayal’ of socially conscious customers, according to Holding Redlich, and that its punishment should stand as a warning to other companies.

The business has said it had donated a total of 333,404 glasses frames, and a total of $80,000 to charitable causes, between January and December 2019.

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