Hayden Hamilton kept getting asked by his online pharmacy customers why contacts were so expensive. According to OregonLive.com, he decided to seek out an answer.
He concluded there was no good reason for contacts to run $20 a box or more, other than pure profit for the handful of manufacturers that control the market.
"It just seemed to be one of those things where the marginal costs are very small," he said.
So in November, he launched Luminous Lens, an online site that sells contact lenses for $9.99 a box.
The biggest hurdle he faces is That, under federal rules, contact lens prescriptions must include the brand name. There's no generic option.
"It's been a very challenging market to break into," he said.
So he's trying to work out deals with Costco and Walmart, which have ophthalmologists in their stores. "We'll be exploring that in 2011."
Photo by Victor Martinez