Bayer, the world's second-largest manufacturer of polycarbonate after General Electric, plans to double its annual capacity to 1.4 million tons by 2005. Makrolon is Bayer's second-largest category of polycarbonate, and the German chemical group wants to market now its high-tech lens-quality variety in association with some major customers.

The first to have done so is BNL Eurolens, a French supplier of semi-finished protective, polarized and sun lenses for the surfacing labs and for major brands such as Bollé, Cébé, Silhouette, Luxottica, IC Optics, Julbo, Logo and others. The company distributes the lenses through Bourgeois in France and Indoptica in Spain.

Bayer and BNL announced at the last Silmo a co-branding deal that ensures a certain promotion of the material by using the ?made of Makrolon? label. Bourgeois and BAB Weps, the new company set up by Franck Bollé, are expected to follow soon along with Uvex, the leading German supplier of protective glasses.