Amancio Ortega – The Spanish Billionaire

Amancio Ortega is the wealthiest retailer in the world and one of the richest men in Europe. He was born on 28th March 1936, in a city known as Busdomgo de Arbas, a small village in Spain. He was the youngest of his 4 siblings. His father, Antonio Ortega-Rodriguez, was a railway worker while his mother Josefina Gaona worked as a domestic and were therefore extremely poor. Due to this, they were unable to afford the most essential needs, thus dropping out of school.

Working Life

When he was 13 years old, Ortega started working in a textile company in La Coruna, Galicia, which specialized in shirt making. From there he shifted to other textile companies, where he learned more about the products and their costs as they move from the producers to consumers.

Since Amancio Ortega never attended high school, this made him continue working in the industry in the early 1960s. He made quality clothes for everyone, since he noticed only wealthy individuals were able to purchase fine clothing. He then started  purchasing cheaper fabric from Barcelona and sell them to local shops.

Business Life

Late in 1963 he founded a company known as Confecciones Goa which specialized in manufacturing and selling fine bathrooms.

The most recent estimate of Amancio Ortega’s wealth is at $ 59.6 billion (2022). In 1975, he opened his first retail store known as Zara from Inditex Fashion Group. It was founded in the Central Street, in Galicia Spain. The store had high-end clothing fashion and also low priced imitations of the popular products. It quickly became a great success making Ortega launch more Stores across Spain and across the globe. Actually, he has about 6200 stores in most malls and shopping centers across the six continents. Other chain stores include Uterque, Massimo Dutti, and Pull& Bear.

In the 80’s he started manufacturing, changing designs and distribution processes which lead to the manufacturing and production of new instant fashion. Using a group of designers and technology, they greatly improved most  of their designs and clothes. The Company has an annual sale of $19 billion.

The Facts

Facts about Amancio Ortega

  • Rated 23rd richest person by Forbes magazine
  • Shys away from public
  • He is a divorcee but later remarried
  • Has three children
  • Is rarely interviewed/ photographed
  • Eats in his company’s restaurant
  • Dress in uniforms when going to work

The Success

Apart from having made a mark in the fashion industry, Amancio Ortega has also invested in gas companies, banks and in the tourism sector. He has fully furnished-apartments in Madrid, Lisbon, and London.

Born in extreme poverty and making his name great, Amancio Ortega is still open minded and modest. And apart from his business ventures, Amancio Ortega has invested in philanthropic movement. Alongside his wife, they formed a foundation which specializes in assisting the disabled and the mentally ill to get educated and also be taught other life skills. He has also founded a non-governmental organization which promotes culture, education, and research.

My Thoughts

I love reading about self-made billionaires, especially one who have come from rags to riches. Amancio Ortega stated working at the age of 13 to support his family.

He must have had a vision of transforming his life of poverty into a life of riches. He took massive action to start his own business and transform it into a billion dollar operation.

Zara is now a well established global fashion clothing brand. The profits from his businesses have enable Amancio to gradually reach billionaire status.

I’m sure that a lot of hard work and self-belief has enable him to achieve this level of success. He has diversified his business and invested in gas companies, banks, tourism and property.

It’s not a good idea to put all your eggs in one basket. The diversification has enabled him to minimize some of his losses during the pandemic.

At one point he was the 3rd wealthiest person in the world, now he has moved down to the 23rd spot. He still has a fortune close to $60 billion. This should be enough to see him to his last days.

Amancio Ortega’s story goes to prove that if you have a dream and are willing to put in the effort, you too could live a life of luxury. Use the 10-Step Goal Setting Plan to create the life style you truly desire.

The fashion industry offers a great opportunity to create wealth for some anyone is willing to put in the research and effort. You need to have an eye for fashion and also the ability to reach out to fashion influencers.

Some entrepreneurs have created brands and managed to establish them using the power of Social Media. If you are able to connect with the right influencers and celebrities, you too will be able to create a successful and profitable fashion brand.

Do Your Research

Before you start any business venture, you must research it extensively. This will enable you to work out if it is a viable opportunity and could also stop you from wasting money.

It will take you time and effort to carry out the research, but it will be well worth it. You should never jump into anything blindly, you should always do your due diligence before making an investment.

Establish which fashion clothes are selling well and work out the profit margin. Work out the manufacturing cost and also the shipping cost.

You need to ask yourself the following questions:

Am I going to be manufacturing the clothes myself or outsourcing it?

Is it going to be outsourced in another country?

How is the quality going to be controlled?

Am I going to be selling the products in my own store or let other outlets stock them?

Is it going to be both offline and online sales?

These above are just a few questions that you need to start asking yourself. There will be many more once you start carrying out your research.

You will also need to take into consideration trademarks, patients and copyrights. You need to create an unique brand that does not infringe on others trademarks, patients and copyrights.

It’s really important to get this sorted out in the beginning, as it may be really costly once you have launched your brand.

Connect With Influencers And Celebrities

You will need to connect with fashion influencers to create a launch plan for your brand. There are many influencers on Social Media platforms like Instagram, TikTiok, YouTube and also bloggers.

Start connecting with them before starting your brand. They will be able to promote your brand and may also be able to connect you with fashion conscious celebrities.

Marketing is one of the keys that can make or break your fashion brand. It does not matter how good a product you create if people don’t get to see it.

Keep You Dream Alive

You will need a large amount of self-motivation to keep you going. Your brand will not become a success instantly. You will need to put in a lot of effort and overcome many obstacles until you start to witness glimpses of success.

There will be many times your dream will seem like dying like a flame of candle in the wind. You will need to dig down deep into your soul to find the motivation to keep you going.

I hope you have found some value in the blog post. If you have, please share it with others.

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