Kering Eyewear was born in the Italian Veneto region and, among the years, has expanded its presence globally. Nowadays, the company servs more than 20.000 clients and 35.000 doors internationally, in more than 115 countries and directly operating in over 28 markets through 16 subsidiaries. We’ve spoken to Paolo Diamante, Kering Eyewear’s Head of LATAM, about strategies and the optician market, considering the repositioning in Brazil of a famous brand: Puma.
Paolo told CECOP Talks that Kering’s overly excited with the repositioning process. He also said that “we’re doing something never done before in the market, combining the best part of product and distribution with the daily work and commitment of independent opticians. We are confident that Puma Eyewear can guarantee to all CECOP’s associates the perfect brand in terms of balance between high rotations and sustainable marginality, and we definitely look forward to celebrating the results of this project”.
CECOP Brasil: In which countries does Kering Eyewear currently operate and can you tell us what are the company’s origins?
Paolo Diamante: Kering Eyewear was born from the avant-garde vision of our President and CEO, Mr. Vedovotto and its first office and Headquarter was and still is in Padova, in the Italian Veneto region, well known internationally for its expertise in the eyewear industry. From there, it has expanded its presence globally, serving now more than 20.000 clients and 35.000 doors internationally, in more than 115 countries and directly operating in more than 28 markets through 16 subsidiaries. This global presence is always characterized by a highly selective network of distributors, matching the company’s mission and long-term strategy, of being the one and only Eyewear Company in the Luxury Industry.
C: Puma is a brand known in different fields. Thinking about the optical market, what strategies are you working nowadays and what is the main target audience Kering is aiming?
Paolo: Puma Eyewear is currently focusing on 3 main objectives: consolidate the core optical business, strengthen relevance and commercial reach of our sun offer and pursue commercial opportunities in strategic markets, liked Brazil. While Puma Eyewear has a very wide and diverse audience in terms of age and cultures, we definitely target consumers with an active lifestyle who look for every-day, trendy yet fairly-priced frames. Our eyewear collection fully embodies the brand’s DNA, and this has been the secret ingredient that made Puma Eyewear so popular in the market all along these years.
C: How’s the process of repositioning Puma in Brazil going?
Paolo: We are very happy with the current repositioning process of the brand in the market. Puma is living a momentum in Brazil thanks to our partnership with Neymar and our current eyewear collection has never been more competitive in terms of design, price positioning, material mix and concepts.
C: How’s the partnership between Kering, CECOP and Protus Group going to strengthen Puma’s name in the optical market? In your point of view, what’s the importance to count on these Brazilian companies to fortify Puma in Brazil?
Paolo: We believe this partnership will generate a great value for all the actors involved: Puma Eyewear, Protus and, most importantly, CECOP’s associates. We’re doing something never done before in the market, combining the best part of product and distribution with the daily work and commitment of independent opticians. We are confident that Puma Eyewear can guarantee to all CECOP’s associates the perfect brand in terms of balance between high rotations and sustainable marginality, and we definitely look forward to celebrating the results of this project.
C: CECOP is the largest community of independent opticians in the world and, just in Brazil, the company has more than one thousand associated business. How do you evaluate the independent optical market? How important is it to Kering’s strategy?
Paolo: The independent 3Os (opticians, optometrists, and ophthalmologists) represent one of our most important partners not only in Brazil, but all over the world. Whenever I have a chance to speak with an independent optician, I appreciate how deep he or she knows the market, its current trends, what the customer is really looking for. It’s extremely important for me and for Kering Eyewear to know that our brands are in good hands, and that’s why we choose CECOP as our partner inside the independent optical market in Brazil.
C: What’s your opinion about the online strategies? Are they “allies” of Marketing? Is Puma going to strengthen digital’s presence in this repositioning movement in the market?
Paolo: The global pandemic has been an important accelerator to digitalization and online sales all over the world, but not every merchandise category has been affected the same way. I believe that specifically for optical offer the consumers will continue to be very connected to their trusted optician, to his/her knowledge, empathy and expertise and will continue to desire an in person visit.
I think the purpose of digital marketing is the call to action to redirect consumer to opticians. Connected to this purpose we created dedicated content to be used both on social media and B2C websites.
C: May you tell a tip or a counsel to the independent opticians in Brazil?
Paolo: Sure! I would like to share with them the word used as 2021 slogan for Puma Eyewear: “re-generation”. I think this term fits well with the moment that our eyewear industry is living right now. While 2020 was the time to adapt and react due to the Covid-19 outbreak, 2021 is the year for all of us to restart and regenerate our businesses with renewed energy, confidence and of course with Puma Eyewear.
C: Would you like to highlight any other information?
Paolo: Yes, I would like to conclude with a few words on the topic of sustainability. The world’s interest and involvement in sustainability issues had a huge growth in the last year, and the same happened from Kering Eyewear’s side.
Since the very beginning, and following the Kering Group experience, Kering Eyewear’s strategy on sustainability is developed around three main pillars: care, collaborate and create.
Since 2017, a close attention has been paid to materials’ sustainability and R&D (Research and Development): since day 1, Kering Eyewear has actively pursued materials and production processes that reduce the environmental impact, focusing on recycled or bio-based solutions.
Kering Eyewear is committed to empowering its imagination on sustainability, aware of its mission to respect the environment, to care about people, to create alternative and innovative solutions through tight collaboration with future generations and territory.
Crafting tomorrow’s luxury goes through being sustainable; far more than an ethical necessity, it is a driver of innovation and value creation, while representing a fundamental belief for Kering Eyewear.