Zara's CEO: Who's in Charge?

12/04/2019 13:00 | Franchise business profiles

zara ceo

Zara is a Spanish fashion brand that aims to deliver on-trend pieces worthy of the catwalk for affordable prices and with minimal environmental impact. As a chain of more than 2,000 stores in 96 countries, it is one of the largest international fashion companies in the world.

The Zara brand belongs to the parent group, Industria de Diseno Textil SA also known as Inditex a fashion retailer that also owns Pull&Bear, Massimo Dutti, Bershka, Stradivarius, Oysho and Uterqe. Combining these outlets, Inditex reaches 202 markets and employs over 170,000 people worldwide.

Therefore, to find out who is in charge of Zara, we must review Inditexs leading figures. Firstly, lets take a look at the history of the company.

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History of Inditex

Inditex began in 1963 as a small business in A Corua in north-west Spain. It was called Confecciones GOA and it made dresses and quilted dressing gowns for distribution. In the subsequent ten years, its workforce reached 500 people.

Zara was introduced in A Corua in 1957. Six years later, Zara added more stores in some of the most prominent retail areas in Spain.

In 1985, Inditex was officially founded by Amancio Ortega to manage a variety of retailers under one company name. Today, Ortega is worth an estimated $62.7 billion and is the sixth wealthiest person in the world. He owns properties in London, Madrid and New York. Inditex was set for success as it introduced a specialised distribution system that rapidly responded to new market trends in order to boost profitability.

The first Zara store to open outside of Spain was launched in Porto, Portugal in 1988. The following year, Zara reached the US with a store on Lexington Avenue in New York.

In 1991, Inditex boosted its portfolio with Pull&Bear and Massimo Dutti. It further diversified its offering in 2003 by launching Zara Home, which sells furniture, bed linen, tablewear and other home accessories.

By 2004, Inditex had opened 2,000 stores across 56 markets in Europe, Asia, Africa and North and South America.

2005 marked a change of leadership for Inditex, as Pablo Isla came on board as the companys Deputy Chairman and CEO. In 2011, he was promoted to the role of Chairman, and retained the position of CEO.

Under Islas management, Inditex and its retailers continued to flourish, reaching a total of 6,000 stores in 2012 and 7,000 in 2015.

Who is the CEO of Zara?

As Inditex is the brand behind the Zara label, Inditexs leadership team are ultimately in control of the fashion retailer. This means that Pablo Isla, the latest person to take up the role of Inditexs CEO, is in the drivers seat.

Inditex states that Isla holds a law degree from the Complutense University of Madrid, which he graduated from in 1987, before becoming Abogado del Estado (the Spanish State Attorney) the following year. Between 1992 and 1996, Isla held the position of Group General Counsel of Banco Popular. After this, he was the Ministry of Economy and Finances General Director of State Assets. In 2000, Isla acted as Chairman of Altadis, a post he held until 2005. Since then, he has been part of the Inditex brand, and has been re-elected to Inditexs board of directors twice in AGMs held in July 2010 and July 2015. This impressive curriculum vitae is testament to Islas expertise as Inditexs current CEO.

Today, he holds 1,933,560 shares in Inditex and is also a member of the board of directors for Nestl.

Zara CEO Email

Neither Zara nor Inditex officially publish their leadership teams contact details. However, information online indicates that Pablo Isla can be contacted via the email address: pablois@inditex.com.

Zara Franchise

Online information suggests that Zara does operate a franchise model. However, it is in the process of attempting to buy back many of its outlets in order to increase the number of company-owned stores. As a result, there are no franchise opportunities currently being advertised for Zara stores in the UK. This is ultimately unsurprising, given that Inditex is one of the largest retail companies in the world; it does not need franchisees to aid international expansion efforts.

Other Retail Franchise Options

Of course, there are plenty of other options for entrepreneurs looking to start up a retail franchise. Noa Noa is another international fashion franchise that shares Zaras interest in sustainability.

Noa Noa

This franchise puts nature first, combining traditional Danish design and manufacturing techniques with high-quality fabrics to create premium clothing and accessories aimed at the modern bohemian woman. Noa Noa rebels against the current trend of fast fashion by championing its slow craft process and constructing truly special pieces that will stand the test of time. As a result, customers can expect to find items made from wool, silk and 100 percent organic cotton in Noa Noa stores.

The fashion franchise has demonstrated its dedication to the natural world by extending its customer returns period from eight days to a month. This will give customers longer to decide whether an item is right for them, limiting the amount of clothes that are discarded after the returns period has ended, when customers ultimately decide against keeping them. This way, items that arent quite right for one person will find another owner further down the line.

Prospective franchisees should be prepared to make a total investment of between £50,000 and £100,000 and sign a franchise agreement, which lasts five years and can be renewed when it comes to an end. With more than 60 stores and a presence in over 400 department stores across 20 countries, Noa Noa has established a global reputation as an environmentally-conscious retailer, so this is the perfect business venture for forward-thinking entrepreneurs with a passion for fashion. To find out more about possible franchise opportunities, contact the brand at shop@noanoa.com.

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