The strategic logic behind EssilorLuxottica’s proposed acquisition of GrandVision has not changed despite the litigation between the two companies, Leonardo Del Vecchio, Essilux executive chairman, told the Italian daily Il Messaggero. Del Vecchio is the founder of Luxottica and is the main shareholder of Essilux through his family holding company Delfin.

“The reasons of the transaction remain unchanged,” Del Vecchio said. “If authorities give the go-ahead to the transaction, it only remains to understand whether the last months of management weighed down by Covid have had repercussions” on the economic evalutions on which the deal is based, he said. The Franco-Italian company made a €7.2 billion offer for GrandVision. But it claims that the Dutch company breached its obligations regarding the management of its business during the Covid-19 pandemic, leading to a lawsuit.

In Essilux, Del Vecchio said he has “never made the weight of my shares felt to accelerate changes.” However, he noted that a list of board candidates will be presented in May for the company’s new board. While he hoped that a single slate of broadly supported candidates will be presented, “it’s clear that from that moment Delfin will exercise the role its weight allows it” as agreed at the time of the merger between Luxottica and Essilor, Del Vecchio stated.