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Amancio Ortega
At the age of 13, Ortega began working for a shirtmaker as a delivery boy. He worked for a variety of stores and tailors and studied how products and costs changed as they traveled from the manufacturer to the consumer. Ortega started making his own products, purchasing cheaper fabric from Barcelona and selling good quality, cheaper products to local stores and expensive department stores. With then-wife Rosalia Mera, they, started making dressing gowns and lingerie in their living room. At the age of 27, Amancio Ortega founded his own company called Confecciones Goa that made and sold fine bathrobes and women lingerie and pajamas. Ortega continued to build his company and in 1975 he opened his first retail store called Zara.

The founder of Zara, Amancio Ortega, opened the first Zara store in 1975 in a central street in downtown A Corua, Galicia, Spain. During the 1980s, Ortega started changing the design, manufacturing, and distribution process to reduce lead times and react to new trends in a quicker way, in what he called "instant fashions In 1980, the company started its international expansion through Porto, Portugal. In 1989 it entered the United States and in 1990 France. This international expansion was increased in the 1990s, with Mexico (1992), Greece (1994), Belgium and Sweden (1994), etc. until reaching its current presence in over 73 countries.