Essilor Finalizes Acquisition of Costa Inc.

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CHARENTON-LE-PONT, France— Essilor International (Reuters: ESSI.PA) has finalized the acquisition of all outstanding shares of Costa Inc., a producer of high-performance sunglasses.

The transaction, announced on Nov. 8, 2013, was approved by Costa Inc. shareholders in a special meeting of shareholders held on Jan. 30, 2014. It has also received all required regulatory approvals. Costa Inc. shares have ceased to be publicly traded on NASDAQ.

When announcing the all-cash transaction in November, Essilor said Costa shareholders would receive $21.50 per share, which corresponds to an estimated enterprise value of approximately $270 million.

“This acquisition, along with our partnership with Xiamen Yarui in China, marks a new step forward in the Group’s sun lens strategy,” commented Hubert Sagnieres, chairman and chief executive officer of Essilor. “Together, we will develop solutions to raise the bar on sun lens performance in terms of optics, protection and comfort. This focus on innovation, which is an integral part of our mission to improve visual health, will benefit both consumers and the entire industry.”

Chas MacDonald, president of Costa Sunglasses, remarked, “This is a positive development for Costa, Inc. and for fans of the Costa brand. As a member of the Essilor family, we’ll maximize their world class resources and technology to develop the next several generations of lens technology, while continuing our growth in the U.S. and internationally, especially within the Rx realm. We remain committed to building the best performance sunglasses for outdoor enthusiasts everywhere, and supporting the programs most important to them.”

Essilor consolidated its interest in Costa Inc. on Feb. 1, 2014. Based on current estimates and excluding the impact of the one-time transaction related costs, the acquisition will be accretive to Essilor's earnings per share in 2014.

Based in Daytona Beach, Fla., Costa Inc. designs, assembles and markets sunglasses under the Costa and Native brands. Costa has become the fastest growing performance sunglass brand in the U.S., with revenue of nearly $100 million in 2013, according to Essilor. It will remain based in Daytona Beach, Fla., with no immediate changes to its operations or distribution.