While Lucia Prada is the name, face, and creative wonder behind the famous luxury brand the other equally important person in the company’s success is Patrizio Bertelli. He is the CEO of Prada, and the husband of Lucia who is the company chairman.
The two met at a trade fair in Milan in 1977 and married the following year. Patrizio was running a leather accessories company at that time. He was the one responsible for encouraging his wife to take risks to make the company a global multibillion fashion empire. The firm now has four labels-Prada, Miu Miu and shoemaker’s Church’s and Car Shoe. It has stores all over the world from the U.S. to South Korea.
He pushed Lucia to open the company’s first store in New York in 1986. A couple of years later, Patrizio urged his wife to start designing women’s clothes and five years on got her to do menswear. While Lucia is the creative force Patizio is the driving force on the business side.
Patrizio is said have his hand on everything from stitching of the shoe seams to the color of walls of Prada boutique stores. Known to be passionate with a temper, he famously smashed a mirror while overseeing the décor of a new Miu Miu store in Manhattan in 1997 because he said the mirror made people look fat. He also broke the tail lights of several cars parked in the wrong spaces of Prada’s parking lot.
Patrizio and Lucia are also known for their volcanic arguments. The marriage looks solid though and the Prada fortune just keeps on growing.