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SCHIPHOL, The Netherlands—GrandVision NV, (EURONEXT: GVNV) parent of the For Eyes optical business in the U.S. market, reported this week that its third-quarter sales rose 9.7 percent at constant exchange rates to €1.045 billion. The revenue increase was 4 percent on a comparable basis, according to GrandVision, which operates leading optical brands and retail banners in more than 40 countries across Europe, the Americas, the Middle East and Asia. GrandVision said its adjusted EBITDA (€164 million) increased 4.9 percent at constant exchange rates in the third quarter, but that the EBITDA margin dropped by 76 basis points to 15.7 percent in the period.

As VMAIL reported, EssilorLuxottica has agreed to acquire a controlling stake in GrandVision from its owner, Hal Optical Investments B.V. in a deal valued at approximately €7.1billion. The closing of the deal awaits various approvals.

GrandVision chief executive officer Stephan Borchert said in this week’s financial announcement that the company was “pleased to announce another good quarter in terms of comparable and revenue growth, despite some operational and macroeconomic headwinds in parts of our business.” A “strong contribution from acquisitions of 4.6 percent” also contributed to the overall top-line growth, he noted.

The company’s store base grew by 101 locations, closing the third quarter with 7,366 stores. E-commerce sales rose more than 60 percent in the first nine months of 2019, GrandVision said, “driven by the expansion of Lenstore and the acquisition of Charlie Temple.” In addition, GrandVision said its omni-channel platform has been successfully launched in seven countries.

Borchert said the company “remains focused on improving profitability in the U.S. over the mid-term by sharpening the store footprint and customer value proposition.”

He also acknowledged that GrandVision has encountered “operational challenges in key markets” at the same time it is accelerating the pace of strategic investments behind digital and product value chain capabilities. This has “led to EBITDA growth below our initial expectations. As a consequence, we are now expecting adjusted EBITDA growth for the year to be below our medium-term objective,” he added.

Addressing the planned deal with EssilorLuxottica, Borchert said: “While there is no news to share as the two companies are working through the regulatory approval processes, I would like to assure all stakeholders that our focus remains on business continuity, and in particular on achieving our medium-term objectives. Through the execution of our strategy, we are continuing to grow our business and attract more customers to our store network and our digital platforms.”