In October, Meta announced it would lay off 11,000 employees after losing more than $9 billion in 2022 thanks to its virtual and augmented reality unit, Reality Labs. Moreover, it predicted that in 2023, the division’s operating losses would “grow significantly year-over-year.” Amid this mass layoff, the Mark Zuckerberg tech giant also acquired Cambridge-based startup Audio Analytic, which builds AI-driven sound recognition software.
And now the news is in, Luxexcel, a smart eyewear company based in Eindhoven, The Netherlands, was reportedly acquired by Facebook parent company Meta at an undisclosed amount. The acquisition will presumably enable Meta to produce prescription AR glasses.
Founded by Richard Vrie in 2009, Luxexcel provides 3D-printed prescription lenses. By meeting the needs of more than 75% of the adult world population who require prescription lenses, the company aims to accelerate the adoption of consumer smart eyewear. With offices in Belgium and the United States, the firm enables this with its patented 3D printing manufacturing platform. On-demand, lightweight, smart prescription eyewear is designed and manufactured by original equipment manufacturers in a fashionable form factor which can be sold to the general public.
At the start of 2021, it also partnered with Oxfordshire-based WaveOptics WaveOptics, the display manufacturer bought by Snap for $500M. Further, there are rumors, Luxexcel has previously worked with Meta on their company’s Project Aria AR glasses.
This acquisition comes as Meta faces regulatory scrutiny over its purchase of Supernatural developer Within. In July, the agency sued Meta to block the deal. As well as its metaverse ambitions, Facebook faces criticism for how much it’s spending.
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