History – the Lenstec Timeline


Formed by three local independent opticians to serve the local South Wales optical industry.

Nigel Castle, the current MD, joined the company to broaden the services offered.

Lenstec invested in producing plastic and glass lenses for glasses while providing a local van service across south and west Wales.

Moved to the outskirts of Caerphilly and expanded its services across the UK.

Developed a second purpose-built modern factory to support its growing client-base and service levels.

Became an accredited ISO 9000 laboratory and undertook a modern management restructuring. Lenstec also introduced an accredited Investor in People culture across the business.

Became sole distributors for a leading German sports lens brand and a leader in corrective sports eyewear.

Appointed as one of only two laboratories in the UK working with Seiko Optical UK.

Undertook a major investment in robotic glazing machinery at both sites, making Lenstec a laboratory focused on quality and becoming a leading supplier of surfaced and glazing services throughout the UK.

On September 6th Lenstec acquired Tant Laboratories, located in Bishop’s Stortford, Hertfordshire, in the South East of England, to strengthen its position in serving the independent optical market.

On 31st March Lenstec Optical Group acquired Rawdon Optical, situated in Leeds. The Lenstec Group now strengthens the independent supply route through its three locations; with Lenstec in South Wales, Tant in Hertfordshire and now a northern presence in Leeds.


£500k invested in 5 Axis edging programme. Installing MEI Bi Sphera TBA production into Tant Labs and MEI 641 TBA and NIDEK SE-1 RHU dry edging to strengthen production, dry edging and sports eyewear development.


April – Shamir acquired a minority shareholding in Lenstec Optical Group.

July – Lenstec Optical Group became UK optical distributor for French sports frame manufacturer Julbo.


July – New warehouse and distribution facility opened in Bedwas Caerphilly offering stock and distribution solutions and services to customers.

£400k Rawdon investment for new Schneider Modulo Generating and Optotech Auto taping and blocking.

September – Lenstec Optical Group awarded certification for the EN ISO 13485:2016 Medical Devices Standard. The Group has alsoawarded the Investors In People 6th Generation Standard.


June – Lenstec acquired Pennine Optical based in Stockport.

December – Pennine Optical is relocated to the Lenstec Warehouse facility in Bedwas.

Pennine Optical distributes key frame brands and a number of medium priced and budget own label collections. Pennine Optical has its own dedicated website www.pennineoptical.co.uk and a highly motivated full sales force who cover Lenstec and Pennine products across the UK.


Lenstec and TANT Labs undergo significant investment of £800k in MEI Dry cut edging technology to improve efficiency, the environment and to further strengthen increased capacity and commitment to UK manufacturing and training.