Entrepreneurship, Ricardo Seola was born into a family of merchants. He studied marketing and has always worked in related roles. Franci Odebrecht, his wife, graduated in Nutrition – with the right to a master’s degree and experience teaching in the area. One fine day, however, the two decided to radically change careers and decided to open a new venture. Together they founded Parco – a small design studio that sells jewelry and accessories. After three years in the store, its products have already featured in some of the main fashion editorials in the country.
“When we opened the doors in November 2011, it was just the two of us. Today, we have 16 employees”, says Ricardo proudly. But along this path, Ricardo and Franci had to learn a lot about the sector in which they would start to work. “We both went to seek specialization abroad, in Milan. I did a master’s degree in interior and product design at the Scuola Politecnica di Design, and Franci graduated as a stylist and pattern maker at the Istituto di Moda Burgo”, says Ricardo. “Already working in our areas in Italy, we thought it would be a good idea to return to Brazil to take advantage of the good economic moment.”
After sketching some business possibilities in a public park in Italy – hence the name Parco (“park”, in Italian) – the idea of building a brand focused on accessories arose, due to the low cost of the initial investment. “Parco was born with an investment of just under 6,000 reais and with a clear focus on research and creation. We knew we had the competence to position ourselves very well and with competitive prices”, says Ricardo. “The main challenge for the founding of the company itself was the bureaucracy to open a business in Brazil”, he adds.
After opening the point of sale, the company’s rapid growth made the couple rethink its structure. “Today, we have a complete team in-house – from production to the model photographed. Everything is handmade at Parco, and the campaigns are created and executed by us”, he says. Over the years, the work has been rewarded with new partnerships and the support of artists and fashion experts. “This recognition is very nice because Parco ends up being disclosed spontaneously, which brings credibility to the brand”, says the businessman.
With more than 50% of Parco’s sales currently concentrated on the internet, Ricardo says he doesn’t look at the competition in creative terms and that the main learning from Parco’s current phase is in the promotional sector. An interesting fact is that many brands have already looked to the small company in Florianópolis as a model of inspiration. “We see that many Chinese, for example, visit our site. We’ve already found copies of our pieces even on the 25th of March!”, he laughs.
Also Read : The Daily Life Of a Young CEO At a Startup