MILAN —Safilo Group strengthened its presence in Chile on Monday by inking an exclusive distribution partnership agreement with local operator Valente Eyewear & Trade. This marks a further step in the company’s global expansion — key to Safilo’s 2020 strategic plan — after the opening of the markets of Belarus and Kazakhstan, announced earlier this month.“We see an interesting opportunity in Chile for brand building and further developing the distribution of our eyewear,” said Safilo Group chief executive officer Luisa Delgado.Founded in 1972, Valente Eyewear & Trade is “uniquely positioned to offer on our behalf the best standards of customer service, in-store communication and merchandising, and to lead local consumers’ engagement, with specific focus on our house brands,” concluded Delgado.Chile is the latest addition to Safilo’s Latin America division, which was established in 2013, also as part of the company’s 2020 strategic plan. Safilo’s presence in the area includes subsidiaries in Brazil and Mexico, a Miami-based regional office and showroom and a distribution partnership in Argentina, which was launched last year.Safilo designs, produces and distributes eyewear collections for fashion labels including Dior, Fendi, Céline, Givenchy, Max Mara and Marc Jacobs, among others. Céline is due to be out of the company’s portfolio by the end of 2017, however.In January, Safilo also established an Atelier division dedicated to the design of hyper-luxury eyewear collections. The line launched with licensed label Elie Saab Couture and house brand Oxydo.In 2016, Safilo registered net sales of 1.25 billion euros.
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