While discussing a possible partnership abroad that may be concluded before the end of this year, Optic 2000 has inaugurated a state-of-the-art laboratory at its new headquarters near Paris following a €2 million investment. The in-house lab, which replaces a smaller one, uses special equipment and software developed by Nidek to edge automatically 4,000 pairs of glasses per day and to prepare them for mounting, minimizing the margin of error and saving 30 jobs by robotizing many functions. Nidek officials indicate that it is the most advanced lab of the kind in Europe. The installed program, which is linked to the buying group's SAP software, allows its retail members to trace the progress of their orders in real time. The production rate of the 800-square-meter lab will grow to 5,000 pairs per day over the next two years, after raising from 12 to 18 the number of edgers. The lab will then be able to handle all kinds of lenses and frames going out to the affiliated stores, which are now more than 1,500. The high throughput had become necessary after Optic 2000 generalized its 19-year-old offer of a second free pair for all its frame styles at the beginning of this year.