MIDO Meets Envision: A Story of Leadership

By Paddy Kamen

While attending Silmo 2012 in October, Envision: seeing beyond  magazine publisher Martine Breton met with Cirillo Marcolin, president of MIDO and ANFAO (the Italian Association of Optical Goods Manufacturers).  Mr. Marcolin graciously answered the magazine’s questions:

E:SB: Can you tell us about your experience of joint presidency of MIDO and ANFAO?

CM: I first held those joint positions from July 2003. I was young at the time and I dedicated a lot of time to doing my best for the association and the industry. Then I decided to let others take more responsibility, while I still remained active in the industry.

But last year I was again asked to take on both roles. The combination of the two offices is part of a strategic plan aimed at creating greater synergy in the sector.

E:SB: How does an optical trade show keep satisfying exhibitors and attendees in this period of economic downturn?

CM: In the last three to four years, we’ve seen quite a difficult situation for the various shows around the world. Companies who exhibit need results or they will cut their participation. So we have to satisfy them and follow the market. We achieved this by moving the location of the show several years ago and have since added new services and events. We’re now working hard to prepare our next show for March 2013.

E:SB:  What are three key strengths of MIDO?

CM: 1. Italian companies are the most important players in the global eyewear industry.

2.Italyis the hub of fashion and MIDO is strengthened by being a part of the fashion trends.

3. MIDO presents not only eyewear collections but also cases, accessories, machinery and lenses. In this way, we satisfy all visitors to the show and differentiate ourselves.

E:SB:  Why should North Americans travel to MIDO in March 2013?

CM: While North Americans have excellent trade shows, MIDO is more international. We have over 1,000 exhibitors, two-thirds of whom are not fromItaly.Canada is an important market for us, and ANFAO has been bringing our leading companies toCanada to show their products. We want more Canadians to come to MIDO, where they can see the best of Italian eyewear and optical technology as well as that of many other countries.

E:SB:  Are the Italians and the French at war in the optical trade show community? If so, who is winning at the moment?

CM: Every show is doing its best to meet the needs of the market. The story is that MIDO is leading and hopefully we can keep improving. There is a lot of mutual respect. The market is global and we are not working against others.