Mike Kirkley, Essilor’s managing director, has announced his retirement as of this month after 35 years at the company.

He played a critical role during his leadership in many initiatives, including the support of independents.

Peter Smith, regional vice president, said: ‘Mike's passion for supporting the independent channel was his hallmark. He ensured they were at the heart of every product, every process and every investment the business made. The legacy of supporting independents continues today and this strategy will remain into the future.’