GIVENCHY ADDS TWO LICENSES

Byline: Robert Murphy

PARIS — Givenchy announced on Tuesday two licensing agreements to further develop its accessories business, one for eyewear and the other for shoes.
The eyewear agreement is with the Italian firm De Rigo and the footwear deal is with Rossi Moda.
LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton, which owns Givenchy, last month acquired a “significant minority stake” in Rossi Moda and a 5 percent stake in De Rigo.
Givenchy said the eyewear deal will include men’s and women’s optical frames and sunglasses, to be distributed worldwide except in Japan.
“Eyewear is a key product for Givenchy,” said Marianne Tesler, Givenchy president, in a statement. “This agreement with De Rigo, its size and its expertise, represents our goal to be a major player in the eyewear market.”
The new Givenchy sunglasses, to retail between $110 and $150, will launch in July, while the optical frames, which will retail between $125 and $190, will bow early next year.
De Rigo already manufactures eyewear for Fendi and Prada, as well as LVMH-owned houses Celine and Loewe.
Also on Tuesday, De Rigo also reported its 2000 sales leaped 42 percent to $403.8 million. In a statement, De Rigo said the sales spike was due to it acquisition of the Spanish eyewear chain General Optica and its joint venture with Prada. De Rigo bought GO last February and signed the Prada deal one month later. Excluding those ventures, the statement said sales would have increased by 7.8 percent.
De Rigo makes eyewear at six manufacturing facilities and distributes them through more than 40,000 outlets in 80 countries.
Meanwhile, Givenchy said the Rossi Moda-manufactured women’s shoe line will be introduced in the next couple of weeks and retail between roughly $200 and $425. (Dollar figures are converted from the French franc at current exchange rates.)
Tesler said the deal will “combine the design creativity of Givenchy with the industrial know-how and rich distribution network of Rossi Moda.”
Last year, LVMH inked a deal with the Venice-based firm to produce footwear for Christian Lacroix. Rossi Moda also makes shoes for brands such as Calvin Klein, Vera Wang, Richard Tyler and Emanuel Ungaro.
Licensing is not the preferred business model for LVMH, but its executives have said in the past that the company is not completely adverse to the strategy. In these instances, the relationship is closer than a typical licensing agreement since LVMH owns stakes in the two partners.

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