Renzo Rosso bigraphy, stories - Founder of Diesel and OTB (Only The Brave)

Renzo Rosso : biography

15 September 1955 -

Renzo Rosso (born 15 September 1955 Brugine, Padova, North East Italy) is an Italian fashion entrepreneur. Referred to as the "Jeans Genius" by Suzy Menkes, he is the President of OTB, the holding group of Maison Martin Margiela, Marni, Viktor & Rolf, Diesel & Staff International (manufacturer and distributor of DSquared2, Just Cavalli, Vivienne Westwood, and Marc Jacobs Men) and the founder of the holding group's not-for-profit organization, the Only The Brave Foundation. Rosso is also the President of the Red Circle investment group; the Diesel Farm in Marostica, Veneto; the Pelican hotel in Miami; and Bassano Virtus 55 S.T., the professional soccer club of his hometown Bassano del Grappa, Veneto.


In the early 2000s, Rosso began investing in other fashion designers and companies that he admired for their creativity, but which often lacked financial stability; he independently emerged as a major player in the world of fashion. In 2000, Rosso made his first acquisition when he purchased Staff International and in 2008 created the holding group, OTB (Only The Brave). In February 2013, the group consists of Maison Martin Margiela, Marni, Viktor & Rolf, Diesel & Staff International, the latter being the manufacturer and distributor for a number of other fashion labels.

Staff International

In October 2000, Rosso purchased Staff International, an Italian fashion manufacturing and distributing company that licensed brands such as Vivienne Westwood and Martin Margiela. Thanks to its production skills, effective logistics, distribution expertise and creative talent, Staff International has gained a strong reputation in the prêt-a-porter sector, enabling it to work designers and brands such as Karl Lagerfeld, Emanuel Ungaro, Valentino, Costume National, Clements Ribeiro and Missoni, among others, whilst keeping the production for Viktor & Rolf and Maison Martin Margiela. Following the purchase, Rosso brought onboard licenses for DSquared2 in 2001, Marc Jacobs Men in 2008, and Just Cavalli in 2011.

Maison Martin Margiela

In 2002 Rosso purchased the majority of the stakes in the Maison Martin Margiela fashion house. Like Rosso, Maison Martin Margiela always had a profound admiration for vintage and authenticity. In the 1990s he became famous for his concept of deconstruction, where he made re-designs of old wigs, canvases and vintage silk scarves, which were transformed into hand-made couture garments. Other similarities between the two can be seen in Maison Martin Margiela's alternative methods in marketing and communication, where the designer continuously refused to partake in face-to-face interviews or photos, and always enforced media relations to be conducted by fax or email. Since the early 2000s' he has been widely acknowledged as one of the most influential and enigmatic designers on the global fashion stage. In December 2009, it was reported that Martin Margiela had quietly left the fashion house.

Women's Wear Daily

During the first years following the acquisition there were various rumors of problems between the two. However, this was frequently denied from both sides. In a unique letter dialogue between Malcolm McLaren and Martin Margiela, published by The New York Times in 2005, McLaren asked how it was working for the "tough, swaggering cowboy" Renzo Rosso. Margiela's response was "We are very, very happy with the way our collaboration with Renzo is building. Renzo has brought us more stability, financial and spiritual -- we are growing together in the best way possible."

Viktor & Rolf

In July 2008, Rosso purchased the majority of the stakes in Viktor & Rolf. Following the deal, Rolf Snoeren, of Viktor & Rolf said to The New York Times "We have high ambitions. We talked for two years because it is such an important step. We wanted to make sure we marry the right partner. Renzo understand's creativity and has the vision and power to make a success."

Living octopus

Living octopus

In countries which are located near sea coasts, sea food is an important part of national cuisine