Safilo, the eyewear giant, has announced its Q3 results, revealing growth in both net sales and profitability. The company attributes this growth to a resurgence in North America and a surge in online sales. In Q3, Safilo’s net sales increased by 6% to €219.1 million at constant exchange rates, or 3% at current exchange rates. However, for the first nine months of the financial year, net sales fell by 21.1% at constant exchange rates to €554.7 million. Safilo’s online business continues to make strong progress, accounting for 16% of total sales.

The company’s profitability also saw improvement, with a 9.3% increase in adjusted EBITDA to €14.3 million for Q3, resulting in a margin on sales of 6.5%. However, for the nine-month period, Safilo reported a loss of €13.9 million.

Safilo’s CEO, Angelo Trocchi, acknowledged the initial impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the company earlier in the year but expressed optimism regarding the positive reaction seen in Q3. This was driven by a sales rebound in July, as well as a dynamic market in the US in August and September. North America played a significant role in Safilo’s recovery.

Trocchi highlighted the improvement across all of Safilo’s core markets and channels in Q3 compared to the first half of the year. Notably, China experienced exceptional growth, while countries like Italy, Germany, and France saw more positive results in Europe. However, the IMEA countries, Latin America, and the travel retail channel presented ongoing challenges for a complete recovery.

The North American market contributed to a 12.1% increase in organic revenues during Q3 at constant exchange rates. Independent optical stores played a particularly crucial role in driving sales for Safilo’s core licensed brands. In Europe, there were mixed trends, with net sales declining by 16.4% at constant exchange rates. Nevertheless, sales to independent optician stores in Italy and other key countries experienced growth. The Asia Pacific region reported a minimal decline in net sales of 6.4% at constant exchange rates, as strong performances in mainland China offset challenges faced by the travel retail business.

Safilo continues to make progress in its digital transformation strategy, having launched a new B2B platform in Europe in August and a new Customer Relationship Management system in November. These initiatives are aimed at enhancing the company’s relationships with European opticians, improving after-sales service, and increasing their share of the B2B business.

Despite the positive recovery in Q3, Safilo remains cautious due to the uncertainties caused by the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. As the company enters November and the holiday season, it faces a new wave of infections in several countries, which could potentially impact business operations.

Overall, Safilo’s Q3 results demonstrate a strong rebound in sales and profitability, driven by the recovery of the North American market and the success of its online business. The company continues to navigate the challenges posed by the pandemic and work towards reshaping its business strategies for long-term success.

Useful links:
Safilo Official Website
Eyewear Industry in the US – Statistics & Facts