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October 25th

Palazzo Mezzanotte
Piazza degli Affari, 6 - Milano

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Chairman, Prada Holding N.V.

Patrizio Bertelli is a craftsman-entrepreneur who has transformed a small leather goods company into a phenomenon in the fashion world. The company's origins, in the seventies, were two small companies founded by Bertelli: Sir Robert and Granello. In 1978, he founded IPI SpA to assemble within a single enterprise all the production resources. That same year, Bertelli met Miuccia Prada and signed the first agreement for the production of leather goods under the Prada label. The brand already owned the historic Fratelli Prada luggage shop in Milan's Galleria Vittorio Emanuele, which was founded in 1923 and restored to its ancient splendor in the year 2000. In 1983, the first Prada boutique opened in Via Spiga and the company began production of footwear. The first collection of clothing debuted in 1989, followed by Miu Miu in 1994. Prada Uomo first appeared in 1995. Prada Sport came along in 1997, and the thin red tongue, that serves as the line's symbol, quickly became a familiar sight throughout the world. Between 1998 and 2000, Prada launched a line of lingerie, Miu Miu Uomo and cosmetics. In 2000 Bertelli acquired a stake in Gucci. Then he resold it to the LVMH group, realizing an appreciation of 150 million euros, which he invested in the acquisition of a majority stake in Helmut Lang. He followed up by securing a stake in the optical company De Rigo, acquired Church's, Jil Sander, Genny and Azzedine-Alaïa .Between 1985 and 2001, sales grew exponentially from 16 million to 1,729 billion euros.