In the previous article, we discussed “How can I tell if my Dior sunglasses are real?”. In this article, let’s talk about “Who make Dior sunglasses?”.
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/collections/polarized-sunglasses)
Dior and Safilo
According to Reuters, the brand licensing cooperation agreement between Dior and the Italian eyewear group Safilo will expire on December 31, 2020, and Dior has decided not to renew the contract by then. Until December 31, 2020, Safilo will continue to be responsible for the design, production and global distribution of Dior and Dior Homme glasses. The Dior eyewear business accounted for 13% of Safilo's fiscal year 2018 net sales. After the news, Safilo's stock price fell 6%.
New Manufacturer Thélios
According to Dior's parent company, LVMH Group, Dior's eyewear business will be licensed to Thélios, an eyewear manufacturer under the LVMH Group. Thélios was co-founded by the LVMH Group and Marcolin, the world's third-largest eyewear manufacturer. LVMH Group holds 51% of Thélios and Marcolin holds the remaining 49%.
As people's attention to eye health and vision problems increases, the importance of glasses as fashion accessories has also continued to increase. The global eyewear market continues to grow steadily. In recent years, major luxury groups have paid more attention to the eyewear industry. As early as 2014, the French luxury brand Kering (Kingyun Group) began to restructure the eyewear business, and gradually took over the eyewear business of its Gucci and other brands.
In April 2018, Thélios opened its first glasses factory in northern Venice, Italy. After the factory was put into production, LVMH began to take back the outsourcing business previously granted to Safilo, and its brand Celine became the first brand under LVMH to independently produce glasses at the Thélios factory. The authorized distribution agreements between LVMH's Givenchy, Fendi and Marc Jacobs brands and Safilo will expire between 2021 and 2024.
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