Prada shop. Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II. Milan, Italy

- Image ID: CNJEEN
Prada shop. Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II. Milan, Italy
M.Flynn / Alamy Stock Photo
Image ID: CNJEEN
The company was started in 1913 by Mario Prada and his brother Martino as a leathergoods shop – Fratelli Prada (English: Prada Brothers) – in Milan, Italy. Initially, the shop sold leather goods and imported English steamer trunks and handbags. Mario Prada did not believe that women should have a role in business, and so he prevented female family members from entering into his company. Ironically, Mario's son harbored no interest in the business, so it was his daughter Luisa Prada who took the helm of Prada as his successor, and ran it for almost twenty years. Her own daughter, Miuccia Prada, joined the company in 1970, eventually taking over for her mother in 1978. Miuccia began making waterproof backpacks out of Pocone.[1] She met Patrizio Bertelli in 1977, an Italian who had begun his own leathergoods business at the age of 17, and he joined the company soon after. He advised Miuccia—and she followed the advice—on better decisions for the Prada company. It was his advice to discontinue importing English goods and to change the existing luggage styles. Miuccia inherited the company in 1978 by which time sales were up to U.S. $450,000. With Bertelli alongside her as business manager, Miuccia was allowed time to implement her creativity onto design. She changed Prada incorporating her ideas. She released her first set of backpacks and totes in 1979. They were made out of a tough military spec black nylon that her grandfather had used as coverings for steamer trunks. Initial success was not instant, as they were hard to sell due to the lack of advertising and high-prices, but the lines would go on to become her first commercial hit. Next, Miuccia and Bertelli sought out wholesale accounts for the bags in upscale department stores and boutiques worldwide. In 1983, Prada opened a second boutique in Milan reminiscent to the original shop, but with a sleek and modern contrast to it. It was opened in the shopping district of Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II.
Location: Milan, Italy