MILAN — Five months after signing a tableware license with Richard Ginori Group, Missoni has inked a five-year eyewear license with Allison SpA, owned by IT Holding.

This story first appeared in the July 6, 2004 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

The women’s and men’s line will be launched in October at Silmo, Paris’ eyewear trade fair, but a few models were on the runway during Missoni’s recent men’s fashion show here.

“Allison is a well-prepared company in this sector and it pays careful attention to fashion products,” said Vittorio Missoni, sales and marketing manager at the family-owned company, in a phone interview. “It was time for a more fashion-oriented eyewear line and we feel ready for it.”

The company did not renew the previous eyewear license with German manufacturer Neo Style. The new license with Allison is renewable for five more years after 2009.

Silvio Vecellio Reane, president of Allison, said in a statement that this “long-term agreement confirms the immediate communion of intents” between Allison and Missoni, and it allows the two companies “to work in an organic way to develop a successful line of eyewear.” Missoni said he has known Vecellio Reane for many years and that he “has closely followed the evolution of our brand.”

Missoni said he expects sales of between 10 million to 12 million euros, or $12.1 million to $14.5 million at current exchange, in the next four or five years through a high-end, selected distribution.

In line with the company’s clothing collections, the eyewear line will play with color palettes and, according to Missoni, focus on innovative shapes. In a statement, Allison said it will develop colors on different materials: acetate, aluminum and titanium for the lighter models. The first collection will show 60 models and will be supported by a specific, product-oriented ad campaign around the world, said Missoni.

Allison produces and distributes eyewear for Gianfranco Ferré, Romeo Gigli, Extè, Anna Sui, John Richmond, Vivienne Westwood, Les Copains and Cerruti 1881. IT Holding took control of the Italian eyewear company, which is based in Padova in northeast Italy, in 1999. Last year, Allison reported sales of 57 million euros, or $69.2 million.