OAKLEY SETTLES SUITS AGAINST RIVAL MAKER OF SUNGLASSES
Posted by freemexy on March 25th, 2019
Oakley, a maker of Cheap Oakley Sunglasses, said yesterday that it had settled lawsuits accusing a bigger rival, the Luxottica Group, of copying patented lens designs. Financial terms were not disclosed. In January, an appeals court upheld a ruling that blocked Luxottica from selling sunglasses with ''emerald'' green or ''ice'' blue tinted lenses. The dispute began after Luxottica bought Sunglass Hut, the biggest seller of Oakley sunglasses, in April 2001. Oakley is based in Foothill Ranch, Calif.; Luxottica is based in Milan. Other patent lawsuits filed by Oakley, including one against Fossil Inc., will continue.
But the real answer is a bit more complex. Yes, Oakley is a master at marketing a sneering, cooler-than-thou image. But industry observers-and even some competitors-also say the company is winning because it has followed two very shrewd strategies.
First, Oakley has been ruthless in protecting its brand, prosecuting rivals who copy its patented technologies and limiting distribution to only a few cachet outlets, like Sunglass Hut. “They’ve been extremely careful to keep their product special,” says Jennifer Black, an analyst with Wells Fargo Van Kasper who follows the eyewear industry. “You’re never going to see an Oakley in a discount store.”
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