Montblanc leaves Marcolin, inks eyewear licence deal with Kering Eyewear

Kering Eyewear has signed a new licence deal with another label owned by the Richemont luxury group. In March 2017, the Swiss luxury giant acquired a 30% stake in Kering Eyewear, and has now decided to licence Montblanc’s eyewear to the Kering group’s subsidiary based in Padua, northern Italy.
 
Villa Zaguri, the headquarters of Kering Eyewear in Padua - Albrecht Fuchs

With this contract, which covers the development, production and worldwide distribution of Montblanc eyeglasses and sunglasses, the Richemont group’s brand has ended its 17-year partnership with Italian eyewear manufacturer Marcolin.
 
“The goal [of this collaboration] is to push the boundaries of design and think about innovative ways of developing eyewear, in order to appeal to the high-flying urban nomads and Millennial adventurers who recognise themselves in the Montblanc ethos and brand values,” stated Nicolas Baretzki, CEO of Montblanc, in a press release. Roberto Vedovotto, president of Kering Eyewear, said: “We are very proud to announce this new partnership, which strengthens our relationship with our shareholder Richemont.”
 
The first Montblanc collection by Kering Eyewear will be launched next January for Spring/Summer 2019, and will be first unveiled at the SILMO optics and eyewear industry trade show, scheduled on September 28 - October 1 2018 at the Paris-Nord Villepinte exhibition centre in the French capital.
 
The licence deal between Kering Eyewear and Richemont follows a similar deal with Cartier in March 2017 and with Alaïa in February 2018. Brands like Chloé and Van Cleef & Arpels also belong to Richemont, and the partnerships between the Swiss group and Kering Eyewear aren’t likely to stop at Montblanc.
 
In the financial year 2017-18, closed on March 31, Richemont recorded a revenue of nearly €10.98 billion, up 3% on a yearly basis. As for Kering Eyewear, which distributes the French group’s 17 eyewear licences in about one hundred countries, in 2017 it generated sales for €352 million.
 
In the latest annual report, the group led by François-Henri Pinault noted that the eyewear segment currently accounts for 5% of the luxury goods market’s global revenue. It was worth €12 billion in 2017, up 4% compared to the previous year.

Translated by Nicola Mira

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