Marcolin S.p.A in Talks Which Could Take the Company Private

LONGARONE, Italy—The main shareholders in Italian sunglasses maker Marcolin SpA (MCL.MI) said on Monday, in response to Italian business newspaper reports, that they are in “advanced talks” on the sale of a controlling stake to private equity fund, PAI.

In a brief statement, Marcolin said, “The shareholders participating in Marcolin’s shareholders' agreement have informed the company that advanced but not finalized talks are currently underway with PAI for the possible sale of a controlling stake in the company.”

Marcolin did not provide details on the value of a potential offer, the identity of the sellers and whether the deal would, in effect, delist the company from the Milan exchange. The company is managed through a pact under which the Marcolin family are main shareholders alongside Diego Della Valle, owner of luxury shoe company, Tod's. Della Valle and his brother, Andrea, each own 20 percent, while the Marcolin family owns around 30 percent. The pact between the main shareholders expires on Dec. 14, 2013.

In 2011, Marcolin sold an estimated six million pairs of eyeglasses and sunglasses in more than 800 models. The company was founded in 1961 by Giovanni Marcolin Coffen and the firm went public on the Italian stock exchange in 1999. Coffen remains chairman, and his sons, Maurizio and Cirillo Marcolin are senior executives with the firm. Giovanni Zoppas is the company’s chief executive officer. Marcolin’s licensed brand portfolio includes Balenciaga, Cover Girl Eyewear, Diesel Shades, DSquared2 Eyewear, Hogan Eyewear, John Galliano Eyewear, Just Cavalli Eyewear, Kenneth Cole New York, Kenneth Cole Reaction, Miss Sixty Glasses, Montblanc Eyewear, Replay Eyes, Roberto Cavalli Eyewear, Swarovski, Timberland, Tod’s Eyewear and Tom Ford Eyewear. The Group’s house brands include Marcolin and Web Eyewear.