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Safilo's wholesale-oriented business model incorporates the entire business cycle of product design, research and development, production, marketing and communication up to distribution and logistics.

Safilo's value chain:

(Click on the value chain below to explore Safilo business model)

Safilo Group's eyewear is appreciated thanks to their quality and their innovation in both materials and design. The Group sees quality to be key to success in the market and in effectively managing its brand portfolio.

Research and development mainly focuses on two types of activities, Product Creation and Design and Research and development into new materials, technologies, production processes and tools/machinery.

A new Product Creation Department was created in late 2014 with the purpose of bridging the gap between Designers and Product Supply. Its mission is to drive the development of the most unique and desirable eyewear collections by combining product development, innovation and the coordination of the multifunctional process from design to manufacturing.Research and development of materials, product and processes aims, on one hand, to improve the technical characteristics of the products and, on the other, to develop innovations of the production process which increase its effectiveness, efficiency, quality and speed to market.

The Marketing and communications campaigns to support Safilo's brand portfolio, are one of the key factors for the Group's success. The main aims of the Group marketing strategies include:

  • ensuring the right positioning for all the brands in the portfolio by deeply understanding each brand's unique DNA and bringing that to life through a combination of unexpected creativity and high level of operational discipline;
  • ensuring the development of Safilo's brands, through an effective marketing mix and adequate investments in communications and trade marketing;
  • to communicate the desired brand equities as well as the distinctive features in terms of design and technology of products in the different categories (prescription, sunglasses, sports products).

The Group develops a specific marketing plan for each brand in its portfolio, adopting different strategies and actions in order to ensure the best position for each one. For licensed brands, the Group develops the strategy in close partnership with its licensors.

Marketing and communications activities mainly consist of direct consumer campaigns and trade marketing activities focused on campaigns conducted in partnership with customers.

Consumer-oriented activities account for roughly 60% of the Group’s marketing and advertising investment, and the main outlets used are print media, out of home and digital media, sponsorships, and public relations with journalists and opinion leaders in the fashion, entertainment and sports industries. Digital marketing has become an increasingly important communication vehicle and will continue to be due to its efficient targeting capabilities and the changing media consumption habits of our consumers.

Trade marketing actions focus on the main customers’ points of sale and account for about 40% of the Group’s advertising and promotion costs; they are of fundamental importance to guide the end customer’s choice and to build up customer loyalty.

Safilo products are produced both within the facilities of the Group and by third parties. Safilo directly produces sunglasses, prescription frames and ski goggles in its facilities in Italy, Slovenia, China and the U.S., and sources finished product from suppliers in Asia, Italy and the USA. The Global Purchases Department is mainly responsible for buying raw materials (steel, acetates, metals, lenses, and customised products), components and equipment.

In order to ensure the quality of raw materials and semi-finished goods, the Group carefully selects suppliers and evaluates them on an ongoing basis based on their delivery times and their ability to ensure certain quality standards, as well as on their available production capacity.

The provisioning is done both in Europe and in other markets. Since the acquisition of a majority stake in Lenti S.r.l. in 1996, Safilo has the know-how to produce lenses for sunglasses in-house. Safilo Group leverages quality as a competitive lever by constantly and carefully checking that its products always comply with ever more stringent national and international regulations.

This is true both for products manufactured in-house and those created at suppliers, whether they supply components, semi-finished goodsor finished products.
Safilo's Quality System is ISO 9001:2008 certified.

Safilo Group sells its products in around 130 countries, through an extensive wholly owned globaly distribution network in 39 countries across the world and more than 170 independent distributors in the other countries. Each Group branch coordinates a solid field sales network, reaching more than 90,000 points of sale including opticians, optometrists, ophthalmologists, distribution chains, department stores, specialised retailers, licensors' own stores, duty free shops and sports shops.


Safilo's distribution network is geographically organised in 6 regions, which respectively cover North America, Latin America, Asia-Pacific, Europe and IMEA.
In addition, four key global sales channels were introduced across all the Group's geographical divisions: Global Travel Retail, operating principally in Asia and Europe and rapidly evolving in the USA from its base in Miami; Global Accounts such as GrandVision; Global Sport & LifeStyle, resulting from the combination of Smith USA and the Sports channel in Europe under one commercial leadership; Department Stores.