Management team

Antoine Amiel

President & Chief Executive Officer

Biography

Antoine Amiel

President & Chief Executive Officer

Antoine Amiel joined New Look Vision Group Inc. as Vice-Chairman of the Board of Directors in May 2012. He is an experienced international executive from the optical industry. Between 1999 and 2012, Mr. Amiel held executive positions within Nikon-Essilor Co. Ltd. ("Nikon-Essilor"), a Tokyo-based joint venture between Nikon Corporation and Essilor International, which manufactures and distributes Nikon ophthalmic lenses worldwide. From 2005 to 2012, he was Executive Officer, Vice-President International Subsidiaries and CEO of Nikon Optical USA, Canada and the United Kingdom. From 2002 to 2005, Mr. Amiel was Managing Director of Nikon Optical UK Ltd. From 1999 to 2002, he was Nikon Essilor's Chief Financial Officer. Prior to his time with the joint venture, he held several finance and marketing positions in Asia-Pacific and North America. Mr. Amiel has a Masters in Corporate Finance from the Université de Paris IX Dauphine.

Marie Frenneaux

Senior Vice-President Retail, Opticians Group

Biography

Marie Frenneaux

Senior Vice-President Retail, Opticians Group

Marie Frenneaux joined New Look Vision Group as Senior Vice-President Retail, Opticians Group in May 2021. Marie is an experienced retail executive. Prior to joining New Look Vision Group, Marie held the Vice-President of Operations position for the Quebec-based luxury brand Le Groupe Maurice, an independent senior housing group acquired by Ventas REIT in 2019, where she oversaw customer experience, healthcare, food & beverages, property management and services, integration and investor relations from 2018 to 2021. From 2016 to 2018, Ms. Frenneaux held the position of Vice-President of Business Operations and Risk Management for North America at privately held Canadian apparel company Groupe Dynamite, a leader in junior and women’s fashion, spanning across Canada and the USA. From 2014 to 2016, Marie held the position of Vice-President of Operations and Real Estate for the Canadian publicly traded company Carters Inc, a leading U.S. designer and distributor of children's apparel operating globally. From 2008 to 2014, Marie held the position of Vice-President of Sales & Operations including Business Development for Thyme Maternity, one of the multiple brands under Reitmans Canada Ltd., a Canadian publicly traded company. From 1999 to 2007, Marie held the General Manager & Director position for Talbots Canada, overseeing the Canadian national business unit of a U.S.-based, publicly traded international retailer. 

Ms. Frenneaux holds a Bachelor of Arts from McGill University.

Jean-Michel Maltais

Senior Vice-President, Omnichannel

Biography

Jean-Michel Maltais

Senior Vice-President, Omnichannel

Jean-Michel Maltais is Senior Vice-President, Omnichannel, for New Look Vision Group. He is a seasoned executive with 25 years’ experience in various engineering, strategy and marketing roles on the international business scene. A strong believer in putting the customer experience as the primary driver of technology decisions, Mr. Maltais is passionate about leading teams and companies through change with all the energy and conviction it requires. Before joining New Look Vision Group, Mr. Maltais has delivered successful digital transformations in several blue chip companies across different industries in both the B2B and B2C space, including O2 UK (cellular), KGB (consumer services), Pearson UK (education) and Travelport (travel). Mr. Maltais holds a bachelor’s degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Université Laval, an MBA from Cranfield UK School of Management and a Postgraduate diploma in Marketing from the Chartered Institute of Marketing UK.

Michael Tovey

Senior Vice-President, Frame Products

Biography

Michael Tovey

Senior Vice-President, Frame Products

Michael has led frame purchasing and product development since October 2018. Michael's entire career has been in eyewear, both retail and wholesale. After graduating from the University of Toronto, Michael went to work for Ray-Ban, first in merchandising, then as a sales representative and finally in a national account management position. When Ray-Ban was sold to Luxottica in 1999, Michael joined the Luxottica team and led the key national account sales program in Canada for nearly 15 years with record results. After leaving Luxottica in 2015, Michael launched his own wholesale eyewear business before joining New Look Vision Group in 2018.

Jason Schonfeld

Senior Vice-President and Chief Financial Officer

Biography

Jason Schonfeld

Senior Vice-President and Chief Financial Officer

Jason Schonfeld joined New Look Vision Group in November 2015 as Director, Corporate Development where he was primarily responsible for mergers and acquisitions. From October 2017 to December 2019, he held the position of Chief Financial Officer of IRIS, The Visual Group (1990) Inc., following its acquisition by New Look Vision Group. In January 2020 he was appointed Senior Vice-President, Business Development. Prior to joining New Look Vision Group, Mr. Schonfeld worked for several years at a major multinational accounting and consulting firm in its financial advisory services department. Mr. Schonfeld has a Bachelor of Commerce from Concordia University, a Master of Business Administration from HEC Montréal and is a CFA® charter holder. Mr. Schonfeld is also a member of the Executive Committee of New Look Vision Group.

Garabed Mardigyan

Vice-President, Financial Planning & Analysis

Biography

Garabed Mardigyan

Vice-President, Financial Planning & Analysis

Garabed Mardigyan joined New Look Vision Group as Senior Director, Financial Planning & Analysis in September 2020. Upon his arrival, he has been responsible for budgeting, forecasting and financial & strategic analyses at the company. He has played a key role in supporting organic growth initiatives across the organization. On a monthly basis, Mr. Mardigyan presents the results of the company by banner to the executive committee & is responsible for the preparation of financial reports for the investors. In June 2022, he was named Vice-President, Financial Planning & Analysis.

Mr. Mardigyan has over 10 years of experience in accounting & finance. Prior to his arrival at New Look Vision Group, he worked at Ivanhoe Cambridge in Investments & Asset Management, at Richter Consulting in the U.S. as a Senior Adviser in Turnaround Consulting & at PricewaterhouseCoopers as a Senior Auditor.

Mr. Mardigyan has a Bachelor of Commerce from Concordia University and is a Chartered Professional Accountant.

Natalia Giraldo

Vice President, Human Resources

Biography

Natalia Giraldo

Vice President, Human Resources

Natalia Giraldo joined the company in February 2022 as Vice President of Human Resources responsible for building and implementing our company’s people strategy to help enable our long-term growth goals and continue fostering an engaging work environment. Natalia is a seasoned global HR leader with experience across several different industries including Media, Financial Services, Healthcare, Energy and Consumer Products in companies like General Electric, NBC Universal, Morgan Stanley and Avon Products across North and Latin America. Prior to joining the New Look Vision Group, Natalia built HumanStep, her executive coaching and HR consulting business helping leaders and companies create engaging and inspirational organizational cultures. 

Natalia holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology with a minor in French from Emory University in Atlanta, a Master’s degree in Organizational Psychology from Columbia University in New York, and a Solution Focused Coaching Diploma from Erickson International. Natalia is also an Associate Certified Coach (ACC) by the International Coaching Federation (ICF) and a Leadership Circle Profile (LCP) practitioner.

Christine Eskandar

Vice-President, Real Estate & Construction

Biography

Christine Eskandar

Vice-President, Real Estate & Construction

Christine Eskandar joined New Look Vision Group Inc. as VP of Real Estate & Construction in October 2019. As a seasoned real estate professional, with over 20 years of experience in commercial real estate, Ms. Eskandar is skilled in several facets of retail which include lease negotiations, store development, lease audits and construction management. She held several positions for both landlord and tenant, including more senior roles within the portfolio management team at CBRE & Cushman & Wakefield, representing major retail banks between 2004 & 2019. Her responsibilities include the oversight of the real estate, construction and facilities management teams for all of New Look Vision Group Inc. As the lead for these departments, Eskandar’s objective is to drive the real estate strategy, implement best-in-class processes, build landlord relationships, establish vendor management processes and support in rebranding roll-outs to ensure flawless execution.

Stéphane Séguin

Vice-President, Special Projects & Integration

Biography

Stéphane Séguin

Vice-President, Special Projects & Integration

Stéphane Séguin joined the company in March 2016 as Senior Director of Business Systems and Integration, working on integrating and consolidating back-office systems, in addition to acquisition integration. In May 2018, he was appointed Vice President of Information Technology, where he led the IT team and expanded its scope to include Project Management, Business Intelligence and Web Development, and created Project ONE (one system across all the New Look Vision Group stores). Along with a CPA designation, Stéphane has over 20 years of experience in various project-related roles in the areas of systems implementation, Business Intelligence (BI) deployment, process re-engineering and acquisition integrations. The earlier part of his career was devoted to consulting in various industries - notably in major consulting firms such as Arthur Andersen, Deloitte and IBM – with the later part of his career having been dedicated to the retail industry.

David Schwirtz

Vice President, Innovation

Biography

David Schwirtz

Vice President, Innovation

Dr. Schwirtz joined IRIS the Visual Group in 2009 as a clinician and completed his residency in Primary Eye Care and Refractive Surgery / Ocular Disease Co-management in 2010. He successfully completed his Fellowship with the American Academy of Optometry in 2011. 

Over the subsequent years, Dr. Schwirtz served in a series of Senior Management roles for IRIS the Visual Group including Professional Relations, Medical Affairs, Regulatory Affairs and Professional Development.

Dr. Schwirtz joined New Look Vision Group when it acquired IRIS the Visual Group in 2017.  Today, he continues his leadership as Vice President Innovation for New Look Vision Group as well as Vice President Innovation for IRIS the Visual Group.

Outside of his executive roles, Dr. Schwirtz continues to be a practicing optometrist as well as adjunct assistant clinical professor for his alma mater, Pacific University College of Optometry.

Marie-Josée Mercier

General Manager, New Look Eyewear

Biography

Marie-Josée Mercier

General Manager, New Look Eyewear

Following her studies in Business Administration, Marie-Josée embarked on a retail career. Coming from a family of entrepreneurs, she was interested in retail management. Ms. Mercier has been a member of several merchant associations to make her voice heard. In 2005, having acquired more than 20 years of experience managing her own businesses, Marie-Josée joined the Lunetterie New Look organization as a branch manager. One year later, Ms. Mercier was promoted to Regional Director for the Quebec City and Eastern Region. In 2010, she was appointed Vice-President of Sales and Customer Experience, responsible for sales and operations for the then 75 stores in Quebec and Ontario. During this time, she had the opportunity to attend the HEC in Montreal where she followed intensive marketing and leadership training programs. In April 2019, Marie-Josée was appointed General Manager of New Look Eyewear.

Juanita Leary

President, Vogue Optical

Biography

Juanita Leary

President, Vogue Optical

Juanita Leary joined Vogue Optical after completing her degree at the University of Prince Edward Island. Starting her career in the retail sector of the company, she quickly moved to the office where Ms. Leary has held various positions from Buyer, Marketing, Director of Operations, Vice-President and in 2018 became President of the Vogue Optical chain.  

Her passion is the people she works with and the customers that visit the various Vogue Optical locations throughout Canada. Ms. Leary is proud of her 33-year career with an amazing company and an amazing team.

Pierre Freiji

President, Greiche & Scaff

Biography

Pierre Freiji

President, Greiche & Scaff

Pierre Freiji was appointed President of Greiche & Scaff in February 2018. He held the position of Vice-President and General Manager since April 2016. As a Licensed Optician in British Columbia, Mr. Freiji has over 40 years of experience in the industry, including 30 years with the organization where he held various senior operational positions including Vice-President and General Manager between 2000 and 2005. Mr. Freiji joined the organization pursuant to the acquisition by New Look Vision Group of a group of optical stores which he co-founded. Mr. Freiji also acted as Vice-President and General Manager in a well-respected organization within the industry.

Julie Coffin

General Manager, Luxury Group Canada

Biography

Julie Coffin

General Manager, Luxury Group Canada

Julie Coffin joined the New Look Vision Group when it acquired the business of Tris Coffin Opticiens in 2016, a well-known fashion eyewear business, in the Greater Montreal area. Ms. Coffin came with a solid experience in every aspect of the field, from Merchandising to Marketing, Buying, Human Resources, Customer Relations and Real Estate. She joined her father’s business in 2009, the fifth generation to do so, after having spent more than 12 years as Director of Operations in, Quebec, Maritimes and Ottawa Region, for Bay Optical, where she was responsible for and oversaw 22 locations. 

Ms.Coffin holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Ottawa.

Éric Babin

President, IRIS The Visual Group

Biography

Éric Babin

President, IRIS The Visual Group

Mr. Eric Babin is the president of IRIS, The Visual Group. He joined the group in 1998 as Director of Information Technology, having been given the mandate to deploy an optical office management system previously acquired by the group. He quickly understood that cloud systems were the wave of the future and went on to develop a system that would be both unique to IRIS and accessible via the cloud. As a fervent disciple of "the customer experience" and involves himself in any aspect of the company related to this area. In 2010, he wasted no time recognizing the huge potential of the iPad, the newest invention to take the I.T. world by storm, leading him to undertake another major project: the development and deployment of the iProfile, an avant-garde application that is now central to the customer experience. Mr. Babin is passionate about any technology that leads to the ultimate goal of creating a unique and immersive experience with the patient while improving the efficiency of the team.

Edward Beiner

CEO, New Look Vision Group US

Biography

Edward Beiner

CEO, New Look Vision Group US

Edward Beiner joined New Look Vision Group Inc. as President of the U.S. Luxury division in March 2020. A pioneer of the optical industry for nearly 40 years, Beiner brings an intimate understanding of the luxury eyewear market in areas of retail, design, manufacturing, wholesale and distribution. An optician by trade, Edward’s first optical boutique opened in 1981 and has since expanded to 13 locations throughout Florida, not including an e-commerce site with national and international reach. In 1999, he not only launched his namesake brand Edward Beiner Lunettes but also revolutionized the pre-made reader category by designing and manufacturing MySpex, the first foldable, fully branded premium ready-made readers. His wholesale network attracted partners from around the world, including an exclusive distribution partnership with Luxembourg-based Gold & Wood and Italian based Vidivici. His continued passion and leadership for creating the best customer experience is undeniable, as his collection of boutiques has made the Top 50 Optical Retailers list by Vision Monday for the last ten years in a row, as well as, winning the Vision Expo’s Annual OPTimum Retail award in 2019.

Foad Nekoui

General Manager, The Vision Clinic

Biography

Foad Nekoui

General Manager, The Vision Clinic

Foad Nekoui joined New Look Vision Group Inc. as General Manager of the Vision Clinic Group in December 2020. He is an experienced optician who has been in the optical business since 1986. Foad started his optical career with Hakim Optical and soon after he joined LensCrafters as General Store Manager. In 1994, he and his brother opened their first optical store in Hamilton, Ontario and very quickly the brothers grew the chain to 13 locations. The chain is now the largest optical retailer in the Niagara region. Foad joined New Look Vision Group Inc. after 27 years of running his independent and successful business. 

Foad attended Brock University where he studied Business Marketing.

Gary Black

Founder and President, Black Optical

Biography

Gary Black

Founder and President, Black Optical

Gary Black is the Founder and President of Black Optical, a passionate, curated eyewear retailer that has built a reputation as a tastemaker in eyewear, but whose identity is deeply rooted in building a community around its founding belief that great design can exist anywhere. 

Born in Tulsa, Oklahoma in 2007, Black Optical established itself as a leading curator in a rapidly growing industry. Gary grew his vision to include two other successful locations, in Oklahoma City and Dallas, which deliver on his vision. From the beginning, Black Optical set out to achieve three things: to curate and retail the best eyewear in the world, to welcome and care for every client like a friend and to create aesthetic environments that inspire.

Industry leaders at InVision Mag and community tastemakers D Magazine, Tulsa People and Oklahoma Mag have recognized Black Optical for community building and retail excellence. In 2016 the Milan-based MIDO declared Gary’s Oklahoma City location one of “the best optical stores in the world.” In both 2019 & 2020, The Vision Council nominated Black Optical as one of the Top 5 Independent Eyewear Retailers in the World. 

As a leader in the eyewear industry, Black Optical has collaborated with several designers including New Orleans-based Krewe and LA-based Jacques Marie Mage.