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One of the oldest continually operating companies in the US today, Bausch + Lomb traces its roots to 1853, when John Jacob Bausch, a German immigrant, set up a tiny optical goods shop in Rochester, New York. When he needed more money to keep the business going, Bausch borrowed $60 from his good friend, Henry Lomb. Bausch promised that if the business grew, Lomb would be made a full partner. The business did grow and the partnership was formed.
In the early years, Bausch + Lomb manufactured revolutionary rubber eyeglass frames as well as a variety of optical products that required a high degree of manufacturing precision. By 1903, the firm had been issued patents for microscopes, binoculars, and even a camera shutter based on the eye’s reaction to light...
A History of Innovation
In the 1900’s, Bausch + Lomb continued to demonstrate its place at the forefront of technological innovation for optical products. Bausch + Lomb produced the first optical quality glass made in America, developed ground-breaking sunglasses for the military in World War I, and created the lenses used on the cameras that took the first satellite pictures of the moon. In 1971, Bausch + Lomb introduced the first soft contact lenses and is still the largest global provider of eye care products.
Bausch + Lomb was listed on the New York Stock Exchange in 1937. In the late 1900s diversified Bausch + Lomb's portfolio to include among other things sunglasses, dental products and hearing aids. In October 2007, Warburg Pincus led the acquisition of Bausch + Lomb, which had previously been a publicly traded NYSE company. In August of 2013, Bausch + Lomb was acquired by Valeant Pharmaceuticals International, Inc. (NYSE: VRX) (TSX: VRX) and became the eye care division of Valeant. For more information about Valeant see www.valeant.com
Although the products, the ownership and the times have changed, Bausch + Lomb is still faithful to the tradition of innovation, quality and craftsmanship established by John Jacob Bausch and Henry Lomb.