- Warby Parker is testing sales of eyewear styles for children, according to the company's website and social media pages.
The frames will be available only at its New York City stores and for just a few months, the company said.
Styles are available in two sizes appropriate for children: "Jr." for kids 8 and up and "Jr. Jr." for ages 4–7, the company said. The frames start at $95, including prescription lenses — the same price as adult lenses.
Warby Parker, a private company, doesn’t disclose revenue figures or its state of profitability, but it was added in 2015 to Fortune’s list of "unicorns," private companies that have reached a valuation of $1 billion or more. At the time, the company had a valuation of $1.2 billion.
According to the company and outside number-crunchers, sales are gaining steadily. Warby Parker generated quarter-over-quarter sales growth of anywhere between 23% and 37% in the five quarters through Q1 last year, when the highest rate was noted, according to a study of online receipts from 110,000-plus online shoppers in the U.S. conducted last year for eMarketer Retail by Slice Intelligence.
Merchandise expansion is one effort that could fuel sales, but children's eyewear is a tricky business. The frames are hinged differently than grown-up ones because of how children grow and play, co-founder Neil Blumenthal told CNN Tech. Plus, while the costs of manufacturing children's glasses are the same as those for adults, shoppers for kids may be less inclined to perceive the $95 price point as a wildly better deal.
The retailer, notably, is launching this test through stores rather than online, which was its inaugural disruptive idea. In the past year, Warby Parker has dramatically expanded its brick-and-mortar operations, which now include over 60 stores nationwide. The company's growth serves as evidence that, ultimately, pure-play e-commerce can only scale so far.