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Safilo and Levi Strauss Sign Licensing Deal

It takes effect in January 2020.

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(PRESS RELEASE) PADUA/SAN FRANCISCO – Safilo and Levi Strauss & Co. announce their multi-year global licensing agreement for the design, manufacture and distribution of Levi’s branded eyewear.

The agreement takes effect in January 2020, with collections hitting the market for the 2020 spring/summer season, and it will run until November 2024, renewable for an additional five years up to 2029.

“This new partnership is particularly significant for our brand portfolio, the Levi’s brand being the number one denim brand globally which genuinely appeals to Millennial and Gen-Zers all over the world,” said Angelo Trocchia, CEO of Safilo Group.

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“With the Levi’s brand, we add an important opportunity to grow in the contemporary market segment, which is the largest for size and development potential and especially appealing for further development in key emerging markets, such as China.”

“Eyewear is an important product category for the Levis brand,” said Karyn Hillman, chief product officer for Levi Strauss & Co. “Our partnership with Safilo will allow us to further strengthen our position as a true lifestyle brand by offering amazing eyewear to consumers around the world.”

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Press Releases

Entrepreneur Magazine Ranks Pearle Vision Among Top Health Products Franchises in 40th Annual Franchise 500 List

This is its 11th consecutive year to be ranked among the Franchise 500.

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(PRESS RELEASE) MASON, OH – Pearle Vision has been recognized as one of the nation’s top health franchises in Entrepreneur magazine’s highly competitive Franchise 500 list, Entrepreneur’s annual rankings rate outstanding performance in areas including unit growth, financial strength and stability, and brand power.

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Pearle Vision was ranked No. 75, placing the brand in the top 15 percent of all franchises ranked. This is the 11th consecutive year that Pearle Vision has been ranked among the Franchise 500, and the 35th year out of 40. Entrepreneur’s 40th annual list was culled from more than 1,000 applications, making this year’s edition one of the most competitive rankings in its history. The annual list is recognized as an invaluable tool for potential franchisees.

“Pearle Vision’s position on the Franchise 500 list exemplifies its strength as a franchise opportunity and as an industry leader,” said Alex Wilkes, general manager of Pearle Vision.

“Our company is committed to providing genuine eye care to our patients, embracing innovation and staying on top of trends. We are proud to lead the way in the optical industry and look forward to welcoming more licensed owners who share our passion for eye care.”

Pearle Vision’s ranking comes during a period of robust growth. In 2018, new franchise locations opened across the U.S., including multiple locations in Florida and California’s booming markets. In early 2019, Pearle Vision is positioned to open franchises in cities across Pennsylvania, Illinois, Florida and Ohio, and the brand will continue an aggressive push into Canada, as well.

“We look forward to bringing genuine eye care to more communities in the U.S. and Canada by partnering with entrepreneurs across various backgrounds,” Wilkes said. “We are especially excited about our Ignite program, which allows independent optometry practice owners to take their business to the next level by converting their practice to a Pearle Vision franchise location. Ignite allows owners to do what they love while reaping the benefits of partnering with a national, legacy brand in Pearle Vision.”

The key factors considered in the Franchise 500 are costs and fees, size and growth, support, brand strength, financial strength and stability. Each franchise is given a cumulative score based on an analysis of more than 150 data points, and the 500 franchises with the highest cumulative scores become the Franchise 500 in ranking order. Details on the Franchise 500 will be available at entrepreneur.com/franchise500 on Jan. 15; the rankings also will be featured in the January/February issue of Entrepreneur, available on newsstands Jan. 15.

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Press Releases

Innovega Patent Allowance Advances Smart Contact Lens Technology

The company also has a financing round underway.

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(PRESS RELEASE) BELLEVUE, WA — The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has issued a notice of allowance to complement the 12 patents already issued to Innovega Inc., a company whose stated goal is “to deliver stylish, lightweight, wearable display technology with high resolution and a panoramic field of view.”

The recently allowed patent, titled “Contact Lens and Method and Systems for Constructing a Contact Lens,” claims the ability to supply the required oxygen to the cornea when the lens contains components that are not oxygen permeable.

“Our team continues to advance our intellectual property, refine our display eyewear reference designs, sponsor clinical testing and conduct discussions about our technology with potential contact lens and display eyewear partners,” said Steve Willey, Innovega co-founder, president and CEO.

Innovega is currently conducting a round of financing with New York-based SeedInvest for the purpose of completing its Phase III FDA clinical investigations for the iOptik and eMacula contact lenses.

The family of Innovega patents claim systems and methods for coupling eyeborne optics with display eyewear in pursuit of two goals: eliminating the need to wear a heavy, cumbersome apparatus; and delivering a panoramic field of view instead of the narrow field that’s inherent with conventional waveguide optics. Innovega’s latest patent allowance adds to one allowed in mid-2018 that claimed methods for regulating water vapor transmissibility while maintaining oxygen transmissibility in ultra-high oxygen permeable lens materials.

Both patents were filed by inventors and scientists Jerome Legerton, William Meyers and Jay Marsh.

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Safilo Names Commercial Head for IMEA

It’s effective on January 2019.

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(PRESS RELEASE) PADUA, ITALY – Safilo has appointed Andrea Zaffin as commercial head IMEA, effective January 2019.

In his role, Zaffin will spearhead the company’s business in India, Middle East and South Africa and will report to Angelo Trocchia, Safilo Group’s CEO. Zaffin will be based in Dubai.

“We welcome Andrea who has long experience in the industry and in these very specific markets. He has strong entrepreneurial skills with a solid and successful background,” said Trocchia.

Zaffin spent over 15 years at Luxottica setting up the subsidiary in Dubai and building the business throughout the MEA region, thanks to his ability to work closely with distributors and creating with them strong partnerships.

More recently, Zaffin has worked with Italia Independent in a consultancy capacity with responsibility for the Middle East, Africa and India.

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