Luxottica Group S.p.A. announced that over the next two years its Sunglass Hut chain will have up to 50 stores in the Middle East thanks to new openings under a five-year franchising agreement signed today with Azal Group, one of the world’s fastest growing retail groups and a leading regional player.
Leonardo Del Vecchio, Chairman of Luxottica Group, commented: “The Middle East is clearly one of the markets with the highest potential for fashion and luxury goods and with an ever growing appetite for leading retail brands such as Sunglass Hut. The product offering of new stores will nicely complement our already strong wholesale coverage of the region by giving our portfolio of leading eyewear brands additional significant exposure to local affluent consumers in their home markets.”
Sunglass Hut is the largest sun specialty retailer in the world, with a total of 1,806 stores mainly in North America, Asia-Pacific and Europe. In the Middle East, Sunglass Hut will be present in the most important high-end shopping malls mainly in the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia. Stores will only carry Luxottica Group leading brands of premium sunglasses, including Bvlgari, Chanel, Dolce & Gabbana, Prada, and Versace as well as the world’s best selling sun brand, Ray-Ban.
Azal Group carries a strong franchise portfolio of over 30 diverse brands that features some of the industry‘s most recognizable brands. Azal Group has operations in the Middle East and Europe
About Luxottica Group S.p.A.
Luxottica Group is a global leader in eyewear, with nearly 5,700 optical and sun retail stores in North America, Asia-Pacific, China and Europe and a strong brand portfolio that includes Ray-Ban, the best selling sun and prescription eyewear brand in the world, as well as, among others, license brands Bvlgari, Burberry, Chanel, Dolce & Gabbana, Donna Karan, Prada, Versace and Polo Ralph Lauren, from January 2007, and key house brands Vogue, Persol, Arnette and REVO.
In addition to a global wholesale network that touches 130 countries, the Group manages leading retail brands such as LensCrafters and Pearle Vision in North America, OPSM and Laubman & Pank in Asia-Pacific, and Sunglass Hut globally. The Group’s products are designed and manufactured in six Italy-based high-quality manufacturing plants and in the only two China- based plants wholly-owned by a premium eyewear manufacturer. For fiscal year 2005, Luxottica Group (NYSE: LUX; MTA: LUX) posted consolidated net sales of 4.4 billion euro.
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