Citing the “evolution of their respective business strategies,” the license agreement, which began in 2010, will end in December, Kenzo said Friday, adding that a new partner in the category will be announced in the new year.
Possible contenders include Thélios, the recently formed joint venture between Kenzo owner LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton and Marcolin, which produces and distributes eyewear for Tom Ford, Ermenegildo Zegna, Tod’s and Diesel, among others.
The paint is still drying on the joint venture’s state-of-the-art eyewear manufacturing plant Manifattura Thélios in Italy, which is already producing eyewear collections for Celine, previously licensed to rival manufacturer Safilo; Loewe, which will debut in the second half of the year, and Fred, to bow by the end of the year.
The forming of Thélios in February 2017 fell amid a series of major changes in the sector that included, a month before, Luxottica Group and Essilor revealing a merger that will create a $16 billion giant. Kering was the first to initiate the string of changes when it decided to set up a new dedicated entity in 2014 and bring eyewear production in-house.
Founded in 1810, L’Amy group produces eyewear for brands including Balmain, Rochas, Sonia Rykiel and Bally.