Prada was founded in 1913 by Mario Prada and his brother Martino as a leather goods shop – Fratelli Prada – in the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, in Milan, Italy. Initially, the shop sold animal goods and imported English steamer trunks and handbags.
Mario Prada did not believe that women should have a role in business, so he prevented female family members from entering his company. But Mario’s son had no interest in the business, so it was his daughter Luisa Prada who took the helm of Prada as his successor, and ran it for almost twenty years.
Her own daughter, Miucca Prada, joined the company in 1970, eventually taking over in 1978.
Miuccia Prada began making waterproof backpacks in the 1970s.She is also the founder of Prada’s subsidiary Miu Miu.
In 1985, Miuccia Prada released the ‘classic’ Prada handbag, that became an overnight sensation – The Saffiano.