Backstage at Fendi RTW Fall 2017

MILAN – Safilo Group is going East.

The Italian eyewear manufacturer revealed on Wednesday it will enter and make its portfolio of brands directly available in two new markets, Belarus and Kazakhstan, as part of its CIS hub headed by Russia.

Belarus and Kazakhstan mark a further step in the company’s global commercial expansion, which is key in Safilo’s 2020 strategic plan. The firm’s distribution network counts now 40 countries worldwide.

“The two markets are of particular interest as part of the Central and Eastern Europe region, which has high potential of growth,” said Safilo Group chief executive officer Luisa Delgado. “We are committed to building trusted partnerships with the local optical retailers,” she continued, adding that these will be based “on transparent commercial terms, a wider choice of brands and support in the development of the local business with in-store communication [activities] and good customer service.”

Safilo designs, produces and distributes eyewear collections for fashion labels including Dior, Fendi, Céline, Givenchy, Max Mara and Marc Jacobs, among others. In particular, Céline is due to be out of the company’s portfolio by the end of 2017.

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 for 1.25 billion euros.

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