In the previous article, we discussed “How much do Gucci glasses cost?”. In this article, let’s talk about “Where are Gucci sunglasses made?”.
For a long time, luxury brands have hardly made glasses themselves, such as Prada, Bvlgari, Chopard, Gucci, etc. The design, production, and distribution are all done by eyewear companies. The technology and craftsmanship of these eyewear companies are all at the luxury level, but few people know these eyewear companies because they have been hidden behind the brands. However, in recent years, many luxury brands have come to an end in their long partnerships with these eyewear companies. Gucci’s parent company, Kering, terminated its cooperation with its agent Safilo and wanted to start selling its own Gucci glasses.
Three major optical companies
Several major eyewear manufacturers in the world almost dominate the eyewear business of major luxury brands. The world's largest fashion glasses manufacturer Luxottica has the glasses business of Bvlgari and Prada. Safilo is ranked second with Dior, Fendi, and Givenchy. The third-largest glasses manufacturer in the world is the Dreco Group, which owns Chopard, Dunhill, Loewe, and other glasses licensing businesses. It can be said that the luxury brand glasses that appear the most in front of you are basically made by the above three eyewear groups. However, Celine has determined that it will no longer cooperate with Safilo by the end of next year, and the DIOR authorization will also end by the end of 2020. Two years ago, Gucci reclaimed its eyewear agency rights and did not hesitate to break the contract in advance and lose money.(https://www.koalaeye.com/blogs/our-stories)
Gucci and Safilo
After 20 years of cooperation, Gucci officially terminated its cooperation with Safilo in January 2017. Because it was 2 years ahead of the contract, Gucci did not hesitate to pay 90 million euros to take back the agency rights of sunglasses. This 'breakup' took almost two years. In September 2014, Gucci's parent company, Kering Group, established its own independent eyewear department, claiming to tighten its control of luxury, sports, and lifestyle brands. This locking strategy started with the revocation of the agent's authority, and the long-term partner, Safilo, became the target. Previously, Safilo was responsible for the one-stop service of the Gucci sunglasses business from design, production to sales.
In order to further release the value of the brand, Kering Group has launched a new business model. Kering Group wrote in the statement. In the same year as Safilo announced its termination, Kering invited Roberto Vedovotto and Massimo Zuccarelli, who served as CEO and creative director at Safilo before, to establish a company called Kering Eyewear. Under their leadership, Kering Eyewear launched the 9 series less than a year after its establishment, including the design and first eyewear series for its Milan jewelry brand Pomellato, as well as the production of Tomas Maier and Christopher Kane of the group.
Gucci's new glasses series is the first so-called “developed and produced by Kering” glasses series officially launched by Kering Eyewear to the market. The brand ambassador of Gucci glasses will be set according to different markets. Kering also stated that its channel strategy can allow sunglasses and optical glasses products to reflect the brand's genes as Gucci's other categories of products.
'The unique new aesthetic brought to Gucci by the new creative director Alessandro Michele allowed us to recreate this brand. Glasses are an important category that expresses Gucci's aesthetics,' said Marco Bizzarri, CEO of Gucci.
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