Founded in 2010, Revant Optics is a Portland-based team building performance eyewear and replacement lenses. After 8+ years of creating a stellar product and building a strong community, Revant has decided to join the Kickstarter community launching their own brand of eyewear that will surely change the industry.
I recently had the opportunity to chat with founder and CEO Jason Bolt to learn more about his passion for sunglasses and his currently running Kickstarter campaign.
What inspired you to build Revant from the ground up?
It all started with a mountain bike crash and scratching the lenses in my favorite pair of sunglasses. When I looked into buying replacement lenses I hit a brick wall — the company didn’t offer them for my frames. So I took matters into my on own hands, researching where the best sport sunglasses were made, traveling to Asia, and ordering replacement lenses directly from the lens manufacturers. And since they wouldn’t sell me just one pair, I came back with a little over 200 pairs of lenses, kept a few pairs for myself, and with the others, launched my first collection selling them directly to people online. All 200 pairs sold within 48 hours.
Tell us about your current Kickstarter project. How does it differ from what you offer on your website?
On RevantOptics.com we started out offering premium replacement and RX lenses for any brand of sunglasses on earth.
We are launching our new Revant performance eyewear system on Kickstarter. Revant sunglasses are distinct from others offered by the industry in that we’ve designed them for peak performance and to last for a lifetime — every pair comes with a lifetime warranty and we will not phase out replacement parts. We learned from our existing lens replacement customers that people find a favorite pair of sunglasses and want them to last for a very long time, so that’s what we’re delivering.Why crowdfunding? What inspired you to run a campaign on Kickstarter?
Our goal is to evolve the eyewear industry beyond disposable design, and it’s something we think the Kickstarter community can get behind. The industry is controlled by only a few players and we believe it’s time someone designed out sunglass obsolescence. With Kickstarter backer support, we can create the future of the industry—less waste and the best performance eyewear made right here in the USA, built to last and backed for life.
Running a campaign on Kickstarter also allows us to engage with a community that has a history of backing innovative and game-changing ideas, so we figured it was the perfect place to continue our journey and launch our own eyewear.
What has been the biggest challenge so far on your crowdfunding journey?
The biggest challenge so far has been narrowing down our messaging for the campaign. There are so many great stories we can tell about our eyewear system — from being the first company ever to utilize certain high-performance materials in the eyewear market, to our host of lifetime services under Revant Max Care that comes with every Revant sunglass purchase — we struggled to cut down to the 2-3 most important messages that the Kickstarter community would find compelling.
In the end, I think we nailed it by focusing on the aspects that reinforce the industry-leading longevity and performance of the Revant eyewear line, but I look forward to telling all of the other stories about the features and benefits of Revant eyewear in the future.
Tell me about your favorite pair of sunglasses ever! Why are sunglasses important to you?
Sunglasses should be important to everyone! They not only protect and preserve one of the most sensitive parts of our bodies, they are essentially an amplification of a person’s personality.
Before we launched our line of eyewear, my favorite pair of sunglasses was the Oakley Gascan. They were the first product that evoked an emotional response from me because I thought they looked so sleek and bold. Now, my favorite pair of sunglasses is the Revant S2L. They look like they were chiseled from a solid block of black granite and are the perfect blend of beauty, bold form, and outstanding functionality. They fit better than any pair of eyewear I’ve ever worn and are an essential piece of my kit for mountain biking.What’s the coolest crowdfunding project you’ve ever seen? (besides your own of course)
Moment lenses—rather than designing a new type of camera, these folks found a way to enhance a piece of technology that we use every day. Their lenses are industry-changing in the truest sense of the phrase. Just like we make eyewear and lenses that help people see the world with more clarity, they’re empowering people to take professional grade videos and pictures through utilizing a smartphone.
Besides this exciting campaign, what’s next for Revant? What can fans new and old look forward to on the horizon?
We’ve got some really exciting stuff on the horizon. This summer, we have a new headquarters coming online with a world-class lens manufacturing facility and our first showroom. It will not only be an incredible place for the Revant team to work, it will also serve as a community gathering space.
We’ll also be continuing to expand our lens offerings, as well as exploring the development of new and exciting frames. Finally, we’re really excited to continue to build upon and add to our phenomenal team!
If you’re a sunglasses enthusiast or just want to support a cool team, I highly recommend visiting Revant Optics’ Kickstarter campaign page before it ends on May 23rd, 9pm PDT.
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