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MILAN Marcolin has gone shopping.

After inking a perpetual license with Tom Ford last year, the Italian eyewear company has taken full control of Ic! Berlin GmbH.

The eyewear brand was founded in Berlin in 1996 and manages the design, prototyping and production of its luxury sun and prescription frames internally.

As per the closing agreement, Marcolin will integrate around 140 Ic! Berlin employees mainly located in the headquarters of the German capital, into its production plant and in the two branches in Japan and the U.S.

Financial details were not disclosed.

The goal of the acquisition for Marcolin is to increase its expertise in metal craftsmanship and to expand its portfolio of luxury brands, strengthening at the same time its commercial position in fundamental areas such as Asia and Europe. 

Web Eyewear is the other Marcolin proprietary brand, which is a segment that is considered strategic for the company.

In addition to Tom Ford, the company produces eyewear collections for Bally, Moncler, Max Mara, Tod’s, Pucci, Guess, Timberland and Adidas Original, to name a few.

Rumors have resurfaced about leading private equity firm PAI Partners looking at exiting Marcolin after 11 years. Neither company is commenting on the speculation.

PAI Partners acquired a majority stake in Marcolin in 2012 from a number of investors who included the Marcolin family and brothers Diego and Andrea Della Valle, and delisted the company.

Marcolin was founded in 1961 and is based in Longarone, in Italy’s Veneto region, which is known for being an eyewear manufacturing hub. It is led by chief executive officer and general manager Fabrizio Curci.

As per the most recent figures available, in the 12 months ended Dec. 31, Marcolin sales rose 20.1 percent to 547.4 million euros, compared with 455.6 million euros in 2021.

Operating profit climbed almost 50 percent to 33.5 million euros and adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization amounted to 61 million euros, up 21.7 percent on 2021.

The strong results were attributed to several factors, including the consolidation of the brands in the portfolio, the implementation of a customer-centric digital transformation, and the continuous push toward production and procurement efficiency.

In 2022, Marcolin saw revenues in Asia jump 47 percent to 24 million euros, while the Europe, Middle East and Africa region reported growth of 18 percent to 260.1 million euros, accounting for 47.5 percent of the total.

Sales in the Americas climbed 17 percent to 232.3 million euros, representing 42.4 percent of the total.

First nine-month Marcolin sales will be released on Thursday.

In 2013, Marcolin acquired Viva International, the North American eyewear company that produces and distributes the frames of a number of brands, including Guess, Harley-Davidson and Skechers. This allowed Marcolin to expand its luxury portfolio with strong diffusion labels and increase sales of optical frames.

Marcolin has been Tom Ford’s eyewear licensee since 2005. The Estée Lauder Cos. Inc. in November said it was acquiring the Tom Ford business for about $2.3 billion, net of a $250 million payment to Lauder at closing from Marcolin through available cash. Marcolin has also raised at least 50 million euros.