Reaction to death of Italian business tycoon Del Vecchio

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ROME, June 27 (Reuters) - Leonardo Del Vecchio, the chairman of spectacles maker EssilorLuxottica (ESLX.PA) and one of Italy's wealthiest business figures, has died aged 87. read more

Prime Minister Mario Draghi:

"A leading figure in Italian business for more than 60 years, Del Vecchio created one of the country's largest companies from humble beginnings... he has always combined international openness with a focus on social and local issues."

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"Del Vecchio was a great Italian: he brought the community of Agordo and the entire country into the centre of the world of innovation."

Designer Giorgio Armani:

"First and foremost, I lose a friend, with whom I shared a long and pioneering professional adventure. Together, we invented a phenomenon that did not exist: we immediately realised that glasses, from simple functional objects would become indispensable fashion accessories."

"Our generation lived through hard times that hardened it: the years of war and reconstruction... Of Leonardo I will always remember his direct way of communicating, his practicality, his loyalty. I will miss him very much."

Italian businessman Francesco Gaetano Caltagirone:

"A great Italian has gone. I will miss him as a friend, as an entrepreneur and as a man of principles. I have always appreciated his loyalty, his desire to work for the good of the company, with absolute detachment from the power that economic power can give, his great vision..."

EU Economy Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni:

"Leonardo Del Vecchio was a great Italian. His story, from orphanage to leadership of a business empire, seems like a story from another time. But it is an example for today and tomorrow. RIP."

Ferrari Chairman John Elkann:

“Leonardo Del Vecchio was a great entrepreneur, who knew how to build an unparalleled industrial group, making Italian ingenuity excel all over the world. He was always close to Ferrari with great passion and enthusiasm, I remember him with deep respect and admiration."

Former Luxottica CEO Andrea Guerra:

"Thank you for believing and pushing us all to ensure that Luxottica was always the best. Thank you for being a constant silent example. Thank you for taking that time around a new hinge or a new material... Silent, concise and the essence of simplicity. Simplicity, so many talk about it, so many aspire to it, he had it in his DNA."

Safilo CEO Angelo Trocchia:

"Leonardo Del Vecchio was an extraordinary entrepreneur who had the ability to create from scratch a company that became a symbol of Italian industry worldwide."

Edizione Chairman Alessandro Benetton:

"The country not only loses a great industrialist, esteemed throughout the world, but also a man of extraordinary talents who left his mark on an entire era."

Real estate group Covivio:

"Since joining the Board, Leonardo Del Vecchio worked tirelessly to support and promote Covivio's European growth and development. He was a visionary who loved real estate, and whose name will remain deeply associated with the values of innovation and authenticity."

Industry Minister Giancarlo Giorgetti:

"A great man and entrepreneur, (a symbol of) Italian pride in the world. I hope that his personal story can be an example for young people."

Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio:

"I express my condolences for the death of Leonardo Del Vecchio, an esteemed personality in the entrepreneurial field and beyond. His is undoubtedly a successful example of Italian excellence in the world."

Veneto Regional President Luca Zaia:

"The Veneto (region) owes him much. He was an entrepreneur who looked far beyond his dreams. With his determination and vision he established himself as one of the most successful entrepreneurs in the world."

"From that workshop (in the town of Agordo) a small company was born, Luxottica, which in a short time grew into a large manufacturer, at the head of which Del Vecchio climbed the ranks of international finance, bringing the Veneto region to the forefront of the world."

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Reporting by Giulia Segreti, additional reporting by claudia Cristoferi Editing by Keith Weir

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