As part of its strategy to focus on its eyewear distribution business, with licensed brands such as Christian Lacroix, Sergio Tacchini or Pepe Jeans among others, Mondottica International has sold its entire stake in the wholly-owned unit GemOptics to Robert Content, the general manager of the French company.
Founded in 1978, GemOptics, formerly known as Gem Lunetterie, was an OEM eyewear provider for high-end brands such as Yves Saint Laurent or Polo Ralph Lauren in its early days, before diversifying and extending its activities to the distribution of brands, like Ray-Ban until 1996, and licenses like Head or Teddy Smith. The company was taken over by Mondottica in 2017, which decided to stop its licensing and distribution businesses in order to refocus on the supply of OEM solutions for acetate and metal eyewear frames.
GemOptics’ current activities include finishing operations for eyewear marked “Made in France” and the production of “Origine France Garantie” labelled frames, but also direct sourcing in Asia where it started doing business in the mid-80s. Content, who has been working at the Oyonnax-based company since 1997, told us that he also plans to develop a plastic injection business for protective and safety eyewear, in collaboration with local suppliers in the region known as the French “Plastic Valley”. He declined to disclose the company’s annual revenues but mentioned that international clients represent about 60 percent of GemOptics’ business. The company currently employs seven people.