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Essilor Reports Strong Results and Acquires Vision Source PDF
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Friday, 31 July 2015

Essilor has reported for the first-half 2015 that its revenue grew 9.4% excluding the currency effect and was driven by the following operational advances with revenue growth in the Lenses & Optical Instruments division of 4.7% over six months and of 4.9 % in the second quarter alone. The company also stated that it experienced solid growth in developed markets, especially the United States and Europe. It also mentioned that there is sustained expansion of its Online business and the ongoing reorganization of, with in particular the adoption of its new commercial identity under Clearly™. Essilor's business in Australia was buoyed by firm sales with independent eyecare professionals.

Furthermore, in the United States, Essilor entered into an agreement to acquire a majority stake in Vision Source, a national network providing services to independent optometrists. Last month, in Australia, Shamir (partly owned by Essilor) acquired a majority stake in Eyres Optics, a producer and distributor of prescription sunglasses and safety eyewear with annual revenue of around A$6 million.

Luxottica Posts Record Q2 Earnings But OPSM Disappoints PDF
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Wednesday, 29 July 2015

LuxotticaIn the first half of the year, Luxottica Group continued to grow across markets and brands, posting a 22% increase in sales and 34% increase in net income, both on an adjusted basis. The Group continued to invest in its long-term success, with a focus on emerging markets, strengthening its retail segment and developing new distribution channels. In the second quarter of this year, the Group delivered adjusted sales growth of 21.4%, or +6.6% at constant exchange rates to Euro 2.5 billion, a record level for a single quarter.

However, the performance of Luxottica's retail division was mixed in the Asia Pacific region, due to the Australian market, where OPSM continued to post negative comparable store sales but Sunglass Hut delivered on the strong momentum seen throughout the second quarter of the year.

“We saw record sales and profitability in the second quarter, which was all the more satisfying considering the second quarter of last year was the strongest in 2014.” commented Adil Khan and Massimo Vian, Chief Executive Officers of Luxottica.

“The results were solid in every region, proving the global sustainability of our business model. North America continued the trend we saw in the first quarter with 6% growth on an adjusted basis at constant exchange rates, boosted by LensCrafters’ accelerating comparable store sales. Europe posted a remarkable +9%, notwithstanding the significant results reported in the second quarter of 2014. Emerging markets recorded 22% sales growth, experiencing high demand for our eyewear collections, particularly in China, Southeast Asia, Brazil and Mexico. We look at the second half of 2015 with confidence. The results of the first seven months of 2015, including July, came in strong and benefited from a good sun season, leading us to confirm our guidance for the full year. We believe the investments we’re making in the Group’s expansion, product and technological innovation and global talent will set us up for future success.”


Marcolin Opens New Manufacturing Facility In Italy PDF
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Thursday, 16 July 2015

Eyewear company Marcolin SpA has inaugurated its new manufacturing facility in Longarone (Fortogna area) - Italy, already functioning since the beginning of May. This operation is part of the quality enhancement process undertaken by Marcolin and allows the company to double its in-house Made in Italy production, while also increasing the area’s local employment.

The starting activities at the Fortogna facility, according to the company’s medium-long term development plan, will increase the production of acetate fronts and temples in Italy. This enhancement will help serve the needs resulting from new brands added to the company’s portfolio, as well as the structural growth of some markets. Marcolin, in fact, has signed licensing agreements with fashion and luxury brands that are characterized by Made in Italy development and production, a guarantee of creativity and quality perfectly expressed by the local artisan tradition.

In the 3.500m2 factory, 143 employees will be fully operative by July, with 30 of them as new hires. 

During the current year, the workforce will grow by 40 additional individuals along with an increase in the production’s volume. The Fortogna facility has been completely renovated after its acquisition was finalized last October 2014. New production equipment has been introduced, the structural systems have been updated and, finally, an internal canteen for the employees has been created.

Google Files Patent for Iris-reading Contact Lens PDF
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Monday, 29 June 2015

Google engineers have filed a patent for a contact lens that would gather data on iris features from a wearer, creating an "iris fingerprint". The system uses built-in light and power sources to gather an iris image, using these patterns to then authenticate or identify a user.

The patent does not go into further detail about how the data will be transmitted. The full patent description can be obtained from:

Last July, Google announced it was working with Swiss pharmaceutical company Novartis on smart contact lens technology.      

Intel Acquires Smart Eyewear Company Recon Instruments PDF
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Thursday, 25 June 2015

Recon Smart EyewearIntel has recently completed the acquisition of Recon Instruments, maker of the new, critically acclaimed Recon Jet™ smart eyewear for sports and high-intensity environments. Recon was formerly an Intel Capital portfolio company. The team will also partner with Intel’s New Devices Group to develop smart device platforms for a broader set of customers and market segments.

The growth of wearable technology is creating a new playing field for innovation, and Intel made tremendous strides in developing products and technologies to capture this next wave of computing. In the last six months, Intel disclosed plans for the Intel Curie module, a tiny hardware product based on the company’s first purpose-built system-on-chip for wearable devices. Intel also unveiled a multiyear R&D collaboration with Luxottica Group S.p.A and their Oakley brand to fuse premium, luxury and sports eyewear with smart technology; and announced a partnership with TAG Heuer and Google to launch a Swiss smartwatch powered by Intel® technology and Android Wear.

Marcolin and Iconix Brand Group Renew Licensing Agreement PDF
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Friday, 12 June 2015

Eyewear company Marcolin SpA and Iconix Brand Group have extended their licensing agreement for the design, production and distribution of the eyewear collections of sunglasses and optical frames for Candie’s, Bongo and Rampage brands. These renewals extend the partnership until 2020. Initially launched through licensing partnerships with former and acquired Viva International Group in 2008, the relationship is now managed by Marcolin USA.

Fabrizio Gamberini, CEO Marcolin USA, affirmed: “We are very happy to renew our long standing partnership with Iconix Group. Marcolin is looking forward to promoting our business together to the maximum extent.”

Lanie List, Chief Merchant, Iconix commented: "Marcolin is the best in class and we are thrilled to continue to grow Candie's, Bongo and Rampage eyewear business with them."

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