The Italian company has been granted the production and distribution license for a line of sunglasses and prescription eyewear by John Richmond, the English apparel designer. The first collections will be showcased at the SILMO show in Paris in October, featuring about 30 models for men and women in 100 variations. The agreement will run for a 5-year period, renewable for a further 5 years, and the launch will be supported by a €1.5 million advertising campaign.

The business plan sets high production levels, with 150,000 units in the first 12 months followed by another 100,000 every year. In the first 5 years, total revenues are expected to reach around €75 million. The line will target the European and Asian markets first, leaving the USA for a later stage, and will compete in the high end of the market with Gucci, Christian Dior and Giorgio Armani. Allison's objective is to cover 2,500 outlets in Europe and 3,500 worldwide by 2006.

In the first half of 2003 Allison's revenues fell by 14.7 percent to €29 million compared with the same period in 2002, but the decline would been of 11 percent only without currency fluctuations. The management attributes this negative trend to the general market slowdown. Allison now represents 9.1 percent of the revenues of IT Holding, its parent company, which had total sales of €318.9 million in the period.