Brand Spotlight: Akoni
Newer brands can’t dominate the market? Akoni is here to prove otherwise.
So, who are ‘Akoni’? When it comes to luxury eyewear brands with a high price point, a few dominant names may automatically come to mind. Cartier, Chanel, Dita, Gucci and Tom Ford to name a few. One thing they all have in common? They are all well-established luxury brand names, recognised worldwide, with an exceptional amount of history. The historic name, alongside the use of the finest materials, technology and craftsmanship is what allows these brands to charge higher price points.
However, the latest brand in the eyewear market, Akoni, is charging fairly similar prices but has only been in operation for three years. Yes, you heard that right, three years. Emerging in 2019, Akoni is the latest brand name taking the eyewear industry by storm. Already working with huge names such as Valentino and Balmain, let’s dive into how they have become so successful in such a short space of time.
The Foundations of Akoni
The brand name, Akoni, is Latin for “priceless; worthy of admiration.”
The Akoni Group was built based on creating a collection of eyewear that held an “incomparable quality”. The founders, Rosario Toscano and Salma Rachid are long-time friends and professionals in creative business. They based the brand on the foundations of not only aligning with people but also with the environment. Sustainability is at the heart of the brand name, and Toscano states that they do not only vocalise their practices for marketing purposes but because the way that they work genuinely is good for the planet.
Toscano has had 20-plus years of experience within the eyewear industry. Therefore, it is no surprise that his new innovative brand has become so successful in such a short space of time. Previously the Global Managing Director of Dita Eyewear, Toscano has worked closely with the brand's founders, Jeff Solorio and John Juniper, and revealed that he has always admired their work. Their close attention paid to technical precision and innovation seems to be qualities that have rubbed off on Toscano as Akoni’s design style could be categorised the same.
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AKONI X BALMAIN
At the beginning of 2020, Akoni brought us their unisex collection with Balmain. It was showcased at the Balmain FW20 men’s show. The Balmain eyewear collections are considered to be tightly distributed with a high price point, allowing them to retain their high Japanese value. Since 2020, the brand's eyewear collection has proven to be highly favoured displaying the same value of quality and luxury that the Balmain name is known for. Olivier Rousteing has worked closely with Akoni on the eyewear line, even having a collection named after and influenced by him, ‘Wonder Boy’. Toscano himself declared that this is one of his favourite collections that he has produced.
BALMAIN EYEWEAR ON THE STARS
Neymar, Olivier Rousteing & Cindy Bruna, Beyonce, and JLo sport Akoni's Balmain collection.
UPSCALING VALENTINO EYEWEAR
The list of luxury fashion houses does not just stop there. In mid-2022, Italian fashion house, Valentino, ended their long-term contract with eyewear industry giant Luxottica and started their ten-year agreement with Akoni. Their new collection will debut at the SS23 RTW fashion show. Valentino based their move on both brands sharing the same values, stating that their new collection will embody the signature Valentino design but with “cutting-edge production techniques”... Valentino’s Creative Director Pierpaolo Piccioli expressed that he aimed to elevate the eyewear category of the brand to the same position as its couture collection.
The Future of Akoni
Here at Pretavoir, we believe that there is no indication of Akoni slowing down. Having already secured deals with two marketing-leading luxury brands, we believe that they may have other partnerships in the pipeline. To find out more about this innovative brand name, then check out the brand information in our glasses and sunglasses sections.
“The market is saturated with low-quality, poorly made, environmentally unsound products with little or no intrinsic value. Our designs, materials, craftsmanship, and customer service aim to surpass expectation. Our eyewear is built to last while making you look and feel great. And we’re socially and environmentally conscious, not because it’s good for marketing, but because it’s good for our planet.”
- Rosario Toscano
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