Safilo estimates that in the third quarter its net sales grew by a mid-single-digit rate at constant exchange rates compared with the same quarter of 2019. It also expects to return to a profit at adjusted Ebitda level.

Previously, the company had forecast a moderate decline in sales for the third quarter. Safilo noted that it benefited from a more contained slowdown than previously anticipated in the wholesale business, thanks mainly to the continued recovery recorded by independent opticians in North America and the “strong progress” of Smith’s online business. Its performance was also underpinned by a greater-than-expected contribution of the direct-to-consumer business, in particular at the recently acquired brands Blenders and Privé Revaux.

Safilo declined to provide guidance for the full year, as uncertainties over the persistent Covid-19 pandemic have only intensified with concerns of a possible second wave of infections.