With Zara founder Amancio Ortega now ranked as the world's third richest man after Carlos Slim Helu and Bill Gates, it's a good time to take a look at the disruptive growth strategy he used to build the company into a global retail juggernaut. If you are not familiar with the brand think of Zara as the European version of The Gap where you can find affordably-priced copies of the more expensive brand's collections. Zara is known for "fast fashion" wherein the focus is on making a profit with many short run collections that often sell out within a month rather than the traditional model wherein a company introduces just one or two collections per year.
Zara's parent company, Inditex, now has close to 6000 stores in 85 countries around the globe. About a third of these outlets are in Spain. The 20-year old company is based in northern Spain. It had $15.3 billion in sales and $2.16 billion in net profits for just the first nine months of 2012.
Now let's move onto the business models of both Zara and the competition to see what works and why.
"After Gates and Slim comes Amancio Ortega, who built the world's largest fashion empire, Zara. He's difficult to know, impossible to interview, and incredibly secretive. An exclusive portrait."
Fortune just published a look at the world's third richest man, Amancio Ortega, who runs the fashion empire Zara. He achieved his spot near the top of the list by trailblazing an entirely new growth strategy for the company. I'll cover it in detail in a few days.
For now, read the article.