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BENSON EYECARE TO ACQUIRE INTERNATIONAL EYEWEAR AND ACCESSORIES; ACQUISITION TO INCREASE BENSON'S POSITION IN THE SUNGLASS FIELD

 NEW YORK, Oct. 29 /PRNewswire/ -- Benson Eyecare Corporation (AMEX: EB) announced today an agreement in principle to acquire International Eyewear and Accessories, Inc. Under the terms of the letter of intent, Benson will acquire all of the stock of International Eyewear for $10 million, representing 1.25 million shares of Benson Eyecare Corporation common stock based on an agreed exchange rate of $8 per share.
 International Eyewear, which has annualized revenues of approximately $14 million, distributes value-priced designer and brand name sunglasses to major mass merchandisers including CVS, Kmart, Target and Wal-Mart representing more than 7,000 retail outlets. International Eyewear licenses a number of important brand names including ABC Sports, Bain de Soleil(R) and Car and Driver(R). In addition, the company owns the International Eyewear(R), Optical Illusion(R) and Zone 3(R) brands. The Company, which was previously the mass marketing division of Tropic- Cal Inc., a division of Bausch & Lomb Incorporated, was purchased by the current owners in December 1992.
 "International Eyewear provides significant operating synergies with our Bonneau division," said Martin E. Franklin, Chairman and CEO of Benson Eyecare Corporation. "International Eyewear's strong presence in a number of leading mass merchandisers complements our existing market position. The merger of International Eyewear into the Bonneau division should produce significant cost savings as well as marketing opportunities. Benson continues to actively pursue strategic acquisitions in the rapidly changing eyecare field."
 The transaction is subject to a number of conditions including the negotiation of a definitive acquisition agreement. It is anticipated that the transaction will close on or before November 30, 1993.
 Benson Eyecare Corporation is a leading distributor of ready-to-wear reading glasses and value priced sunglasses to mass merchandisers, drugstore chains and supermarkets and is the largest operator of ophthalmologist-based dispensaries in the United States.
 -0- 10/29/93
 /CONTACT: Martin E. Franklin of Benson Eyecare Corporation, 212-754-2800, or Fred Spar of Kekst and Company, 212-593-2655/
 (EB)


CO: Benson Eyecare Corporation; International Eyewear and
 Accessories, Inc. ST: New York IN: HEA SU: TNM


TS -- NY017 -- 8370 10/29/93 09:21 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Oct 29, 1993
Words:346
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