PARCOUREZ

notre héritage

Née en 1958, adoptée par les plus grands skieurs des années 60 et les stars des années 70, Solar retourne à la lumière grâce au groupe Julbo. Une gamme de produits coup de coeur, avec des verres polarisants, pour suivre la mode sans se ruiner et se faire plaisir aussi bien à la ville qu’à la montagne.

OUR HERITAGE

AND BEYOND

Founded in 1958 and adopted by the greatest skiers of the 60s and the stars of the 70s, Solar is back in the limelight thanks to the Julbo Group. A range of exquisite products with polarized lenses so you can follow fashion without breaking the bank, and live life to the full whether in town or in the mountains.

1947

BIRTH OF THE SAMP

Foundation of the Société d'Application de Matières Plastiques by Gaston Beauchef (graduate from a prestigious business school in Paris), Georges Bourguignon (wholesaler) and Monsieur Perradin (technician and inventor) at 10, Rue du Lac in Annecy, France. Their big dream was to patent eyewear. June Houghton, the American wife of Gaston Beauchef, worked at the United Nations in Geneva and typed all their letters out in English. There was no optical industry in Annecy and their equipment in the early days was minimal to say the least: three chairs, a table and a hired typewriter!

1950

THE ADVANTAGES OF AN AMERICAN WIFE

Thanks to June, the Houghton-Beauchef couple traveled to the USA. Gaston visited the Chicago trade fair with 12 models in a shoebox. While there, he found a broken pair of sunglasses on the ground and brought the frame back with him, fascinated by its design. It was to be the start of a great adventure.

1952 - 1955

FIRST SUCCESS

Through the successful export of its Broadway models, the company achieved its first million-franc sales figure, bought an old tram garage, the Gare de Thônes at 6 Rue de Rumilly in Annecy, and added the name Solar to the SAMP brand.

1956 - 1960

EXPANSION OF THE COMPANY

With the growth of its export business, Solar added three additional floors to the building. This allowed the company to accommodate all stages of the production chain in Annecy and to champion its French expertise.

1968

THE SKI SNOWBALL EFFECT

Solar released the Solar Ski collection and chose Guy Perrillat, an Olympic medalist at the Grenoble Winter Games, as its ambassador.

1970 - 1971

BRAND OF CHAMPIONS

Solar became the official supplier of the French national ski team and expanded its premises. At the same time, it continued to develop its striking, stylish and glamorous "fashion" models.

1972

SOLAR REWARDED

Solar was awarded the French export "Oscar" by Minister of Finance, Valéry Giscard d’Estaing. The company was manufacturing 25,000 pieces a day, 75% of which were sold for export in 120 countries, proof that products made in France had international appeal.

1973

HAUTE COUTURE COMES TO SOLAR

Thanks to its designs and innovative ideas, Solar entered the world of French luxury products through acquisition of the Nina Ricci license under the artistic direction of Jacques Le Brigand and Paule Beauchef. Jackie Kennedy Onassis boosted the success of the collections, making the front page of Paris Match in 1978.

1977 - 1978

DESIGN OF THE PAOLA BELLE COLLECTION

With the launch of other designer lines such as Jean de Paris, Diane de Carlo, Mannequin and Les Belles de Paris, Solar became the largest manufacturer of sunglasses in Europe.

1979 - 1981

SOLAR FIFTH IN THE WORLD

With Solar now the leading brand in France and Europe, and the fifth-largest in the world, Roussel Uclaf acquired a stake in the company and brought with it the licenses of Balenciaga and Rochas. Gaston Beauchef, creator and founder of Solar, eventually sold the company which now had 300 employees.

1982 - 1989

THE TECHNICOLOR 80S

The Solar Ski collections expanded with the emergence of new sports such as freeriding, snowboarding and skateboarding, but the new management at the time would not allow the brand to continue its ascent. It would be nothing but a collective memory for several decades.

2016

JULBO BRINGS SOLAR BACK TO THE LIGHT

For almost 25 years, Solar slipped out of sight as it passed through the hands of several industrial groups. The sleeping beauty was not, however, completely forgotten. Julbo, an independent French brand, launched a successful takeover in 2016. With more than 125 years of expertise and passion for sunglasses, Julbo embarked on the renaissance of Solar in 2017. As part of this process, Julbo approached the founding family of Solar to understand the DNA of the brand and bring it into the 21st century.