In the world of sunglasses, there is one company that rules them all: Luxottica.
While you may not be familiar with that name, you’re likely familiar with its subsidiaries like Oakley, Ray-Ban, and Sunglass Hut.
Luxottica has humble beginnings
It was founded by Leonardo Del Vecchio as a workshop that made parts for other eyewear makers in 1961.
The company eventually started producing its own glasses, and expanded its empire through a series of sharp business moves, per Forbes:
- In 1988, Luxottica signed a licensing agreement with designer Giorgio Armani, which he says helped turn glasses into fashion accessories.
- From 1990 to 2001, the company acquired Vogue Eyewear, Persol, Ray-Ban, and Sunglass Hut.
- In 2018, Luxottica merged with Essilor, a french manufacturer of optic lenses, to create an eyewear behemoth.
As you might expect, these moves were lucrative for the company and its founder.
Del Vecchio was born in 1935…
… to an impoverished family in Milan and raised in an orphanage. He passed away yesterday at age 87 as the proprietor of a ~$25B fortune.
When asked the secret to his success, Del Vecchio replied, “I’ve always strived to be the best at everything I do — that’s it.”
Get the 5-minute roundup you’ll actually read in your inbox
Business and tech news in 5 minutes or less