O=MEGA21 goes ahead, World Congress of Optometry shifts to 2023

Annotation 2020-09-10 112942

The World Council of Optometry (WCO) has announced that the 4th World Congress of Optometry (WCO4) will now be held from September 8-10, 2023 in Melbourne, Australia.
Originally scheduled to be held alongside O=MEGA21 in September 2021, COVID-19 impacts have necessitated the postponement – now WCO4 will be held in conjunction with O=MEGA23. O=MEGA21, the largest eyecare and eyewear trade show and conference in the Southern Hemisphere, will proceed as scheduled for an Australian and regional audience from September 2-4 2021 at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre.

Mr. Paul Folkesson, President of the World Council of Optometry, confirmed that the partnership with Optometry Victoria South Australia (OV/SA) and the Optical Distributors and Manufacturers Association of Australia (ODMA) would continue. ‘The global pandemic has meant that we need to delay WCO4, but we do so knowing that this is in the best interests of our stakeholders around the world’, Mr Folkesson said. ‘Because of the strength of our relationship with ODMA and OV/SA we remain certain that Melbourne is the best place to hold WCO4, and as such there will be no need to retender for the Congress. The original Melbourne bid was excellent and all parties have been working together very well in planning for 2021. That momentum will carry us forward to 2023, and we are all very excited to be bringing the WCO Down Under,’ he said.

OV/SA President Elise Pocknee-Clem said ‘There were a number of factors that made the decision to delay the WCO4 component of the 2021 program a simple one for the three Boards’, she said. ‘Many private optometrists from overseas have experienced shutdowns, as we have in Australia, and the economic impact of closures may have a flow on effect limiting practitioners’ ability to travel abroad for CPD next year. Also, significant periods of lockdown and inconsistent ‘opening up’ protocols
could impact the capacity of attendees to commit to international travel in the short term. This, and the impact on the university and not-for-profit sectors, and the difficulty in predicting the timing for the ‘end’ of the pandemic meant that we needed to act decisively’.

The Chairman of ODMA, Robert Sparkes, said ‘Optometrists and the ophthalmic optics community are telling me that they are extremely eager to resume face to face buying and learning opportunities’, he said. ‘As the market leader, and given that O=MEGA21 is a year away, we wanted to provide certainty that we want to go ahead and that we’ll do so with the welfare of our attendees in mind.

We’re already working with the venue to ensure a really wonderful second iteration of O=MEGA. It has always been our intention to develop the O=MEGA product into a truly regional event for Australia and our near neighbours. Now we have one more opportunity to do that in September 2021 before we open up for the whole world to come and enjoy Australia in 2023.’

O=MEGA21 is presented by ODMA and OV/SA from 2 to 4 September 2021 at Melbourne
Convention and Exhibition Centre.
Media enquiries:
Pete Haydon, CEO – OV/SA +61 (0) 428 650 254
Finola Carey, CEO – ODMA +61 (0) 416 007 919
Garryn Marlen, Associate Managing Director – WCO +1 314 983 4106


Untitled design

With the uncertainty around the developing COVID-19 situation, we have made the difficult decision to cancel OSHOW2020 which was due to take place at the Hordern Pavilion, Sydney on 16-17 May 2020.

We are saddened that the event will not proceed due to the COVID-19 crisis, and apologise for any inconvenience and difficulty this may cause. However, the health and wellbeing of our members, exhibitors, customers and the broader community has to be our major concern and is the reason for cancelling the event.

We reviewed all the alternatives including rescheduling but with no end date to the Government’s ban on gatherings of 500+, it is too difficult to make a further commitment that may have far-reaching financial implications.

Naturally, the cancellation has come at a cost with the venue, contractors and organisers already partially paid and other amounts due.    We will continue to work with our suppliers to minimise the exposure.  We will be refunding exhibitors from today.

We hope that a vaccine will be found quickly and in the meantime will put all our resources into recovery and making OMEGA21 a success for everyone.


Finola Carey

Chief Executive Officer


Australia wins bid for World Congress of Optometry in 2021

Annotation 2019-10-14 094622

The World Council of Optometry (WCO) is set to announce that the 4th World Council Congress of Optometry will be held in Melbourne, Australia in 2021.

The winning competitive global tender was put together by Optometry Victoria South Australia (OV/SA) and the Optical Distributors and Manufacturers Association of Australia (ODMA).

The WCO will run alongside the highly successful Australian clinical conference and trade show O=MEGA21 from 2 to 4 September 2021 in Melbourne, Australia.

Scott Mundle, the outgoing President of the World Council of Optometry, will confirm the partnership at a ceremony at the 3rd WCO in Orlando, Florida, on 26 October.

‘I’m delighted that the WCO is heading Down Under,’ said Mr Mundle. ‘We had a very strong international field of contenders wanting to host the 4th WCO, and the Melbourne bid was quite outstanding. I have no doubt that the Australians have the experience, infrastructure and professionalism to deliver an outstanding event.’

OV/SA President Elise Pocknee-Clem said: ‘It’s an honour to have been chosen to host the 4th WCO. Early September is a great time to visit, get high-quality continuing education, and see how optometry is practiced in Australia and the Asia Pacific region. It will be a tremendous opportunity for our members to come together, share ideas, and make international connections.

‘Melbourne is a wonderful place to bring family and friends. We encourage you to discover the hidden gems of the city, and to spend some time travelling in Australia – one of the most beautiful, safest, and friendliest countries on Earth.’

The Chairman of ODMA, Robert Sparkes, said: ‘O=MEGA21 is the largest and most credentialed clinical conference and trade show in the Southern Hemisphere for optometry and the ophthalmic optics community.

‘It has always been our plan to expand the reach of our new O=MEGA offering, and make it a truly regional event. We are excited about collaborating with the World Council of Optometry and hosting the WCO during O=MEGA’s second stellar conference.’

OV/SA is part of the professional association for optometrists in Australia. It is committed to delivering quality, practical, cutting-edge education for optometrists. ODMA is the leading industry body, and operates the largest eyecare and eyewear show in Australia.

In July 2019 OV/SA and ODMA joined forces to welcome more than 3500 visitors to its first-ever combined event, O=MEGA19.

The World Council of Optometry facilitates the development of optometry around the world and supports optometrists to promote eye health and vision care as a human right, through advocacy, education, policy development and humanitarian outreach.

O=MEGA21 / 4th World Congress of Optometry is presented by ODMA and Optometry Victoria South Australia from 2 to 4 September 2021 at Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre.


Media enquiries:

Pete Haydon, CEO – OV/SA +61 (0) 428 650 254

Finola Carey, CEO – ODMA +61 (0) 416 007 919

Susan Cooper, Interim Managing Director – WCO +1 314 983 4106


O=MEGA19 Post Show Report

fb omega - CopyThe Australian optical industry’s largest education, eyecare and eyewear event was well represented across all key segments. The trade show hosted a total of 130 exhibitors offering a range of products and services.
Popular features on the show floor were the Awards of Excellence presentation shortlisting the very best in fashion, innovation and technology, Live Window Dressing & Window Dressing Competition and the Bausch & Lomb Knowledge Centre.
New benchmarks were set by many exhibitors with regards to stand design and the event has a very optimistic future

We have compiled a post-show report with all the stats and facts just click  – omega19 post show report here to read it

ODMA and Optometry Victoria launch O=MEGA19

ODMA and Optometry Victoria have announced the most significant change to the optometric
conferences and events landscape in Australia for many years. The two market leaders in optics
education and events have joined forces to launch O=MEGA19, a biennial event which will be the
largest education, eye care and eyewear event ever seen in Australia.
Replacing SRC and ODMA19, O=MEGA combines the most credentialed and largest annual
optometry conference in the Southern Hemisphere with the largest eye care and eyewear show in
Speaking at the O=MEGA19 brand launch at OShow in Melbourne, ODMA Chairman Rob Sparkes
said “In the new global landscape of optics we cannot wait for change. We need to deliver change.
We hope the entire industry will embrace this united joint venture.”
Optometry Victoria President Murray Smith said “We think O=MEGA19 will be extraordinary.
O=MEGA19 brings the best of SRC and ODMAFAIR together. We think optometrists and others
involved in the optics industry will really love this opportunity to come together and learn, network,
and work with suppliers to help us all do our jobs better.”
O=MEGA19 will be held in the new expansion at MCEC which is fully integrated with the conference
space. It will have a new modern schedule including dedicated exhibition-only time to suit both
delegates and exhibitors alike. There will also be a 40 point CPD minimum, a new format including
lectures, sponsored sessions, team-based learning and small group workshops, a design junction
fashion eyewear area, and a cocktail party on the Saturday night.
Speaking about the legacy of SRC and ODMA Fair, Murray Smith said “Optometry Victoria is very
proud of SRC and the legacy it has built – many of our members love it. So do we. But the way
continuing education is being delivered is changing, and we need to be at the forefront of that
conversation. O=MEGA19 makes that happen. It’s really exciting and we thank ODMA for their work
with us on this project so far.”
Mr Sparkes concurred: “ODMA Fair and our other products have been the cornerstone of optics
events in Australia for as long as most people can remember. We’re proud of that legacy. In fact, it’s
only because of the strength of our events that we can be so forward-looking and ambitious with
O=MEGA19. It’s a truly exciting initiative and we can’t wait to bring it to market in 2019. ODMA looks
forward to working with Optometry Victoria to deliver an international world class event.”
Presented by ODMA and Optometry Victoria
An international event showcasing the best in education, eye care and eye wear
July 19-21 2019, Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre
For media enquiries: Pete Haydon 0428 650 254; Finola Carey 0416 007 919

logo final

O-SHOW Take Up Extraordinary

Taking place from 21-22 May in Melbourne, O-SHOW will deliver the latest optical industry technology showcase in the Southern part of Australia. The take up of stand bookings at O-SHOW has been extraordinary to date, with 85% allocated in the first 3 days after launching.

Finola Carey Chief Executive of ODMA was delighted and yet not surprised with the response. ‘’We are simply fulfilling the wishes of the members who have been wanting an event of this type for some time. Certainly the fact that O-SHOW is owned by ODMA and created for the benefit of the industry, has been warmly received’’ she said.

Exhibiting companies are excited about the fashion focussed event at a boutique venue in the fashion capital of Australia. The spotlight will be on new equipment and releases of new frames and sunglasses. Confirmed exhibitors include Mimo , ilab, Frames Ectetera, Van Staveren Eyewear Designs for Vision, Tiger Vision, Optimed, Hoya, Essilor, BOC Instruments, Heidelberg Engineering, ZEISS and Device Technologies to name a few.

Key features of the Show include a Business Education Program as well as hands on demonstrations
where exhibitors will encourage visitors to compare and contrast the equipment on display.

The Business Education Program will centre on improving your business. Session topics include ‘How to market your business better’, ‘How to improve your online presence’ and ‘Developing and maintaining customer loyalty’.

A Cocktail Party will also be held within the Exhibition on the Saturday night, which will not only be great fun but also a wonderful networking opportunity.


DATES:  21-22 May 2016
VENUE:  Peninsula, Central Pier Docklands, Melbourne
WEB:       o-show.com.au

Interested in visiting?
Register to visit at www.o-show.com.au

For further information contact the Organiser:

International Exhibition and Conference Group Pty Ltd
Tel 03 9596 9205

New and Exciting Boutique Event for Melbourne

A new industry show for the optical industry has been announced called ‘O- Show’.
To be held in the fashion capital of Australia, O-Show provides a great opportunity to have the latest industry technology showcase in the Southern part of Australia. O-Show is owned by the Australian optical industry. It has been developed for the industry, by the industry. ODMA has been planning an event of this type in the alternate year to the ODMA Show for some years.
The latest offerings for the industry will be presented in a funky environment providing a relaxed opportunity to network and enjoy the ambience. Taking place Saturday 21 May – Sunday 22 May 2016, the industry event is well timed for samples to be presented at MIDO to be showcased in Melbourne.
“O-Show timing fits perfectly well to be run in the alternate year to the ODMA Show and will be a great
resource for the industry” said Finola Carey, Chief Executive Officer of ODMA. “ It is a non CPD event with the emphasis on hands on demonstrations, and the opportunity to compare and contrast new products and equipment” said Carey.
Marie Kinsella, CEO of International Exhibition & Conference Group Pty Ltd welcomes the opportunity to deliver this successful event. With a background in major industry events including leading fashion events such as Fashion Exposed, this new business to business event will feature some trend leading features and experiences.
O- Show will support new scholarships for the industry as well as providing funding support for Optometry Giving Sight.
21 -22 May 2016 is well timed in Melbourne for AFL football. Regarded as the cultural centre of Australia, there are some terrific theatre productions happening in Melbourne at the same time.
Mark your diary, 21 May – 22 May 2016 and register to visit at www.o-show.com.au. Book your flights and accommodation today.
For exhibitor or visitor enquiries contact the professional exhibition organiser, International Exhibition & Conference Group Pty Ltd on tel +613 95961742.
21 – 22 May 2016
Shed 14, South Wharf
Docklands Melbourne
For media enquiries contact ODMA
Tel 02 8249 4380
International Exhibition and Conference Group Pty Ltd Tel 03 95969205

New Organiser announced for ODMA2017 Sydney

The Board of ODMA is delighted to announce the appointment of International Exhibition and Conference Group Pty Ltd (IEC) as the exhibition organiser of ODMA2017.
ODMA2017 will take place 7 – 9 July in Sydney at the new and stunning International Convention Centre at Darling Harbour. Not held in Sydney for the past 6 years, there is much anticipation for ODMA2017 to return to the harbour city.
IEC has vast industry fair experience. ’The company was selected from a very capable list due to their key
personnel history of working with Associations, their commitment to excellence and their enthusiastic and creative approach” said Finola Carey, Chief Executive Officer, ODMA.
‘’I am confident that IEC is best placed to closely work with ODMA to deliver the event to suit the changing needs of our members and the broader industry in general,’’ she said.
Marie Kinsella, IEC CEO was the founder and former Managing Director of Australian Exhibitions & Conferences Pty Ltd. The company under Marie’s direction developed major industry events such as Fashion Exposed and Furnitex. “I have always admired the ODMA fair over many years for its high quality presentation and its professional approach. We look forward to working closely with ODMA and its members to deliver outstanding results.’’
ODMA has decided to freeze the floorspace rates at the 2015 level even though the cost of staging the event will be significantly higher than the previous venue. ODMA2017 will have an array of new interactive features, major networking events and strong educational content including revamped Masterclasses and Spotlight Seminars.
Recently, ODMA members have been surveyed and have provided constructive feedback to help reshape and improve outcomes of participation in the industry fair. Being back in Sydney, in a stunning new venue with many new initiatives, ODMA2017 promises to deliver the very latest in fashion, innovation and technology and be the best to date.
”ODMA remains committed to representing the interests of the independent Australian optical industry.” said Finola Carey, Chief Executive Officer, ODMA.
ODMA Your Show, Our Show 7-9 July 2017, International Convention Centre, Sydney.
For further information contact ODMA
Tel 02 8249 4380
International Exhibition and Conference Group Pty Ltd
Tel 03 95969205


At ODMA’s Annual General Meeting on 11 November, which was attended by 16 of ODMA’s
70 members, ODMA’s Executive Committee for the next two years was elected as:
Richard Grills
Designs For Vision
Mark Altman
Device Technologies
Brad Saffin
General Optical
Craig Chick
Hoya Lens Australia
Lionel Minter
Mimo Australia
Phuong Nguyen
Essilor Australia
Nicole Perry
Safilo Australia
Robert Sparkes
Samantha Crooke
Younger Optics
Robert Sparkes from Optimed was elected unanimously to the Chair at the meeting. He
takes over from Richard Grills, the elder statesman and longest serving of the ODMA
committee having served on the board since 1996. Richard will remain on the committee for
two years to support the new Chairman.
The Chairman summarised the year’s activities in his address to members.
Newly elected board members Brad Saffin, Samatha Crooke, Craig Chick and Mark Altman
will commence work for ODMA at a board meeting on December 11.
Under general discussion there was a wide ranging discussion about ODMAFAIR and its
future and all member questions were answered to their satisfaction.
For media enquiries please contact:
Finola Carey
Telephone (02) 8249 4380


Richard Grills will hand over the helm as Chair of ODMA to a successor at the upcoming ODMA AGM
to be held on 11 November 2015. Whilst Richard is stepping aside as Chair he is still standing for re-
election to the board for a final two year term before he retires. Richard has been the Chair of
ODMA for 10 years and a director since 1996 and has led the Association from strength to strength.
ODMA’s membership numbers vary between 70 and 80 wholesalers in any given year and are
representative of equipment companies, frame companies/ sunglass companies, lens companies
and accessory companies. The 9 person board by virtue of natural democracy has usually been
approximately represented by three frames/sunglasses companies, three lens companies and three
equipment companies.
Three long serving board members Gaye Wymond ( 2001)Eyes Right Optical (frames), Paul Stacey
(2001) Shamir Australia (lenses) and John Toouli (2006) Bolle (sunglasses) are moving on and a
number of ODMA members are showing a keen interest in submitting themselves for election to the
board – a very healthy sign. Incumbent directors Duy Phuong Nguyen (Essilor Australia), Lionel
Minter (Mimo Australia), and Robert Sparkes (Optimed) are all re-standing for election. They will be
joined by Nicole Perry (Safilo Australia) returning from maternity leave after the recent birth of her
second son – making history as the first female director of ODMA to have a baby whilst serving on
the board.
At the AGM Richard will be paying a special tribute to the three outgoing directors who have worked
tirelessly for the Association. It should be noted that the 9 member Executive not only serve unpaid,
but the cost to them in business time and incidental expenses should be recognised. He will also be
offering congratulations to Nicole and Grant Chick on the birth of their son – a proud new addition
to the Chick dynasty for Safilo Australia founder Roger Chick, a previous long serving ODMA board
The first order of business for the newly elected November board will be managing the tender
process for ODMA2017 which will include a full review of past events and an analysis of exhibitor
and visitor research to determine the future direction of the show.