Jacky Buchmann, former chief executive of Buchmann Optical Holding (BOH), passed away last month at the age of 86. Taking the helm of the family business after his father, he transformed it by quickly developing the lenses' production and by taking over Briot, the French optical equipment company in 1980. The Belgian-based group became a major player on the French and Benelux markets and also had a lens production unit in Hungary. In 1999, Buchmann sold its lens business to Hoya to focus on opthalmic equipment after taking a majority stake in Pro Laser Group in 2001, the Israeli parent company of Weco, which was later on merged with Briot. After a failed alliance with Indo in 2008, Jacky Buchmann eventually sold the Briot-Weco company to Luneau Technology in 2010, and progressively retired from the business. A successful entrepreneur, he was also a high-caliber politician. Among other responsibilities, he sat at the Flemmish Parliament between 1980 and 1985 and was the mayor of Kapellen, a city of 25,000 people near Antwerp, for almost 20 years until 2001.

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