Inspiring Story Of The Europe's Richest Man And Creator Of Zara Empire: Amancio Ortega

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This is the story of a man who became one of the world's richest people from being a railroad worker's son. He is mostly known as the owner of the 'Zara' brand, however, Amancio Ortega owns a chain of stores including Massimo Dutti, Pull & Bear, Bershka, Oysho, and many more brands. He's a true self-made billionaire. With his $64.5 billion of fortune, he is the world's 4th richest person. So how did that happen?

We brought this inspiring story together for you.

Ortega was born in 1936 in Spain as the son of a railroad worker.

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He was the youngest of 4 brothers. When he was 14, his family had to move to La Coruna. Ortega started his work life there, running errands for the local T-shirt factory.

Ortega learned tailoring in time and he opened a small shop with his family, using the skills he got from his previous job.

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In this small shop, they started producing robes, dresses, and many other kinds of hand-made clothing items. They asked for help from the women in town who knew how to knit when they were short staffed. This shop would become the foundation of Spain and even the world’s biggest fashion company.

He created his first brand, 'Zara' in 1975, with his spouse Rosalia at the time.

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(Rumor has it that Ortega wanted to name the brand 'Zorba,' but the name was taken, so instead he went with 'Zara'.)

He started producing nightgowns, underwear, and even children's clothing. The same year, Zara opened its first store in Spain. Zara was getting more and more popular and the enterprise was growing very rapidly.

What was his strategy that made him achieve such growth?

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The brand was following the latest fashion trends and it was aiming for the middle class. Zara helped the middle class have access to fashionable clothing with fair prices.

Basically, the strategy was to make cheaper imitations and different variations of whatever was popular on the runway.

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What's more is that people could buy these creations within almost two weeks after a fashion show. This was an extraordinary revolution for the middle class.

Moreover, Ortega introduced the 'fast-fashion' concept to retailers.

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What does 'fast fashion' mean?

The fashion world is simply made of two main collections. Spring-Summer and Autumn-Winter are constantly in circulation, meaning when the old season goes on sale, new products arrive so there is a much faster pace and consumption.

After Zara, the fast-fashion model was adopted and is still being used by many other companies.

Amancio Ortega single handedly owns 59.3% of the world's retail clothing market.

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The adventure that started in the rainy forests of Galicia now reaches over 90 countries with more than 6000 stores.

Ortega surpassed Bill Gates to become the richest man in the world.

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He had a good roll in the stock market and he was listed as the world’s richest man in 2015, surpassing Bill Gates.

As Europe's richest man, Ortega had earned 'world’s richest man' title more than once.

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People speculate that his system can achieve better profitability than Warren Buffet or Jeff Bezos of Amazon. So we think that he will stay in the top 5 for a while.

Inditex, is one of the 3 companies that was valued over $106billion.

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The other two companies are Sarterder Bank and GSM company Telefonica. Howeve,r Inditex has left these companies behind long ago. Ortega was a self-made billionaire who achieved all his wealth in a recessive economy where people were losing their jobs and companies were bankrupting.

What do we know about Ortega's personal life?

Surprisingly, not too much as he is living an isolated and private life away from the public eye. He does not give interviews. He didn’t even have any photos until he got rich. However, this photo shows that it is getting impossible for him to escape the press.

After the sudden death of his first wife Rosalia in 2013, he married Flora Perez.

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Other information we have from the paparazzi is that he likes horse riding, watching horse racing, and sailing with his yacht.

Here’s how we understand how serious Ortega is when it comes to business:

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According to Inditex employees,Ortega values front end sales personnel’s opinions and feedback more than their managers.

Successful businessmen tend to have many real estate properties as they have an eye for good investments.

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Ortega owns insane amounts of property. The total value of his real estate is $10 billion. May we remind you that good real estate usually earns value over the years instead of depreciating.

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Photo: Torre Picasso tower he Purchased in 2011 (business tower).

Who will take over the Empire?

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It is speculated that 80-year-old Ortega probably will leave its place in the company to his daughter, Marta Ortega Perez in the near future.

There are reasons behind why Marta is the most likely candidate.

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Marta Ortega had been training for the company from a very young age. She has worked in every level of the company including folding clothes in the stores.

The duo are seen together in every photo that was in the press.

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We can say that they have a common taste and they surely spend a lot of time together.

Will Marta be able to manage this company as successful as her father? Only time will tell.

Let's end the gallery by stating that their brands are favorite shopping destinations for many celebrities including Kim Kardashian and Kate Middleton.

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