Not content with making your fashionable frames, Ray-Ban owner gets into corrective lens game

A €50bn merger will see "EssilorLuxottica" dominate the optical industry...

Not content with making your fashionable frames, Ray-Ban owner gets into corrective lens game

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Already the owner of big sunglasses brands like Ray Ban and Oakley, Italian eyewear company Luxottica has turned its gaze to the corrective lens market. 

It has agreed to merge with French visual health company Essilor in a deal worth €50 billion, meaning it will now be making glasses and lenses for those with eyesight issues.

The newly-named "EssilorLuxottica" will be a real leader in the optical industry with a turnover of €15bn, operating in more than 150 countries with a staff of over 140,000. The combination should slash costs between the two of up to €600m. Luxottica founder Leoanrdo Del Vecchio will be executive chairman and CEO, as well as the largest single shareholder with a 30% slice of the combined company.

Luxottica was founded by Del Vecchio in 1961. Aside from its ownership of the major brands above, it also owns Sunglasses Hut and has the licence for the likes of Burberry and Ralph Lauren, Business Insider reports.

Del Vecchio said in a statement:

"The marriage between two key companies in their sectors will bring great benefits to the market, for employees and mainly for all our consumers. Finally, after 50 years, two products which are naturally complementary, namely frames and lenses, will be designed, manufactured and distributed under the same roof."

Essilor CEO and chairman Hubert Sagnières commented:

"Our project has one simple motivation: to better respond to the needs of an immense global population in vision correction and vision protection by bringing together two great companies, one dedicated to lenses and the other to frames.

"By joining forces today, these two international players can now accelerate their global expansion to the benefit of customers, employees and shareholders as well as the industry as a whole."