Business is Boring is a weekly podcast series presented by The Spinoff in association with Callaghan Innovation. Host Simon Pound speaks with innovators and commentators focused on the future of New Zealand. This week he talks to Valentin Ozich, founder of I Love Ugly.
The fashion industry isn’t an easy one to break into. Very rarely do New Zealand brands become leaders around the world which is what makes I Love Ugly so special. Its clothes are worn by some of the world’s top stars (Justin Bieber famously bought 15 pairs of its signature pant), had a store opening in LA with lines around the corner, and built up hundreds of thousands of followers on social media.
I Love Ugly changed the rules to sidestep some of the silliest parts of fashion. Instead of running interest-free loans to all their stockists like most small fashion labels would, they innovated their model and became pioneers in e-commerce instead.
But then things grew a little too far. Stock started to pile up and the bank changed its appetite for risk. Rumours swirled I Love Ugly might be going under, and the reality is, most brands probably would have.
Founder Valentin Ozich brought his company back from the brink and has now started to tell that story. His new podcast and the company’s social media presence aims to inspire, educate and be honest about what it takes to succeed.
To talk good (and not-so-good) decisions, personal growth and where Tony Robbins fits into it all, Valentin joined Business is Boring.
Environmental Innovation is the focus for this year’s C-Prize challenge – Callaghan Innovation is asking innovators to develop tech solutions with the power to change environmental outcomes. Business advice, mentoring and R&D expertise will support finalists to turn their concepts into reality. Follow the C-Prize journey.
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