Luxottica Gets Club Monaco Eyewear License

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NEW YORK – Polo Ralph Lauren Corp. has licensed a U.S. subsidiary of Italy’s Luxottica Group SpA to design, manufacture and distribute prescription frames and sunglasses bearing Polo’s Club Monaco brand in the U.S. and Canada. The agreement is effective Jan. 1 with distribution set to begin next summer.

Luxottica has held the rights to Polo Ralph Lauren eyewear since last February and will begin selling the branded eyewear early next year.

“The partnership with Luxottica is ideal as they have a strong portfolio of retail stores and they have a significant worldwide business that will continue to help us to build the Club Monaco brand internationally,” said John Mehas, president of Club Monaco, in a statement.

Luxottica’s U.S. retail holdings include LensCrafters, Pearle Vision and Sunglass Hut. The Italy-based company operates nearly 5,700 optical and sun retail stores globally. Club Monaco currently operates 66 stores in North America in addition to 12 licensed sores in Asia and Dubai. Its 2005 worldwide sales exceeded $5.5 billion.

Polo’s revenues, including royalty income, in the last four quarters have approached $4 billion.

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