Please enable JS

Thelios Eyewear: WIP reduction by 35% by synchronizing the Value Chain

Case study Marcolin / LVMH / Thelios
The challenge

Managing complexity and growth

Manifattura Thélios was established on the 24th April in Longarone, Italy, a town renowned for its expertise in eyewear. This new site is dedicated to the production of glasses for the Maisons belonging to the LVMH group.

Launched in 2017, Thélios is a joint venture combining LVMH and Marcolin’s expertise. These two groups came together over their shared vision for the future of eyewear.

Marcolin Group has been creating, manufacturing and distributing sunglasses and optical glasses for major brands (such as Tom Ford, Bally, Moncler, Sportmax, Ermenegildo Zegna...) for almost 60 years. In 2018, they sold over 14 million pairs of spectacles through 150 distribution partners in 125 countries. As you can imagine, their international supply chain and production processes are quite complex. On top of that, their customers demand the highest quality, not only of the design but of the entire value chain.

Thanks to the alliance of cutting-edge technologies with unique expertise, Manifattura Thélios has created a complete and flexible production tool that ensures integral product monitoring, from the initial creative

The solution

Synchronisation of the value chain

EFESO took 2 months and 3 experts to examine the situation. Thanks to EFESO’s previous experience with Marcolin, Luxottica and their good rep- utation in France, they knew what type of optimisation could be achieved. The focus was on the development of processes, manufacturing areas and key suppliers:

  • Together with the whole technical team, EFESO implemented
    • A Lean development system to shorten development lead time, anticipate problems with the concurrent engineering of collections and knowledge capitalisation
    • A lean design approach to rationalise the product range, by reducing unnecessary complexity and therefore reducing the risk of obsoletes
    • A capacity model to balance workload for prototyping, development and industrialization
  • Together with the future Operations team, EFESO implemented the
  • Industrial strategy by developing a lean factory which has a brilliant delivery time and minimum working capital; the concept of dynamic assembly lines was initially realized in cardboard and is now a reality
  • Human dynamics were at the centre of all EFESO interventions; in fact, the adoption of lean concepts, where flow is predominant on local productivity required a lot of effort to break the traditional production paradigms.


  • Reduced response time leading to better shelf availability and faster replenishment
  • WIP in production: -35 up to -50%
  • Increase of value creation in development through faster prototyping and Knowledge reuse.
  • Further loss reduction in technical department (process BPR and digitalization)
  • Leveling of workload by setting the cadence of launches
  • Industrialization Lead time reduction
  • Synergy with design, early management of critical issues and sharing people for prototyping
  • Production Lead time -35%
  • Obsoletes in Supply Chain -30%


Launched in 2017, Thélios is a joint venture combining LVMH and Marcolin’s expertise, as two groups brought together over their same vision for the future of eyewear. The com- pany employs 245 people from all over the world, with 100 of them at its Manifattura.
Massimo Stefanello, former COO of Thelios says: The difference in working with EFESO is that together, in a very down to earth and joined up way, we managed to obtain serious improvements of our value chain, but it’s their focus on the human side of things which is a real asset in this type of projects.
Gianni Zoppas, CEO, Thélios confirms “With the Manifattura Thélios, we aim to anticipate the future while showcasing our long-standing expertise. This project combines our taste for top quality products with our respect for a cultural heritage essential to the region.”