Patricia Bonaldi: “Function defines the dimensions of your online business”

Patricia Bonaldi: “Function defines the dimensions of your online business”

“Define the size of your business according to the purpose his.” This is the message of the stylist and entrepreneur Patricia Bonaldifounder and creative director of the brand PatBO. It was with this in mind that she expanded and internationalized her brand, now present in 25 countries, without losing the essence. “I know my business very well and I know how far it can go being what it is. If you understand where you want to go, going backwards becomes much easier.”

Yesterday (31), in a live case of the program Leading the Future, given by Forbes in conjunction with SingularityU., the stylist spoke about her history in building the brand that bears her name. She was interviewed by Antonio Camarottipublisher and CEO of Forbes magazine.

Before working in fashion, Patricia graduated in law, but still in graduation, she and her husband, whom she married at 18, already had plans to start a business. “We already had this entrepreneurial streak, we just didn’t know how to name it.”

They went to live in Japan for three years to work in factories and raise money to start a business. Born in Uberlândia, she used to be successful with the clothes she had made. Back in Brazil, she realized that there was an opportunity there, and so she opened a multi-brand store in Minas Gerais. But what was successful were his own creations. “When the store was going really bad and people weren’t buying what I sold, I started offering what I could create.”

There, his eponymous brand was born. From made-to-measure party dresses, upon payment by check to buy fabrics, Patricia Bonaldi now has 12 stores of her own and global presence with more than 250 distribution points. “As a good entrepreneur, I didn’t miss any opportunity that came along.”

Direct contact with customers was essential at the beginning. But when the business started to grow, she sought training in fashion and since then she has traveled the world interacting with this universe.

When you’re not being challenged, it’s time to take a leap

Also like a good entrepreneur, she takes risks, but calculates the steps she takes. “Every time we made the leap in the company, there were moments when I no longer felt challenged.”

When she started working with multi-brands and exporting her creations, she understood that she could go further. “I would launch something, wait for a response and build up the courage to take the next step, always feeling the client’s own thermometer.”

That’s how she created a genderless collection, entered home decor, attended three New York Fashion Weeks and became the first Brazilian woman to be on the calendar of the Council of Fashion Designers of America association.

Innovation is its formula to challenge itself and keep growing. “When it’s really good, that’s when I get alert, it’s time to reinvent myself”, he says. And that doesn’t mean throwing it all away. “It’s being one step ahead of myself.”

To take the brand out of Brazil, she invested in a consultancy that helped her understand the international market. “I’ve always worked a lot on improvisation, my story started like this, but to internationalize that doesn’t work.” This is because, according to her, in the international market, strategic planning is almost more important than the product itself.

Aware of what she needed to grow, when she realized that she also suffered from a lack of professionalization in management, she invested in it and focused on governance and HR. “The great strengths were the branding and the product and the weakness was the management. We knew we needed to look at it carefully.”

The focus on people also happens with the embroiderers, a specialized workforce that goes against the speed of the industry. At the factory in Uberlândia, Patricia Bonaldi maintains the school sewing dreamswhich has formed more than 500 embroiderers – some even hired by her. “I make clothes with so much manual labor that they are jewelry. Slow fashion has a lot of chance to compete today, there is room for smaller businesses.”

Source: Forbes

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