Rosalía Mera Goyenechea (28 January 1944 – 15 August 2013) was a Spanish businesswoman and entrepreneur. At the time of her death she was the richest woman in Spain and the world's richest self-made woman. In 1975, she co-founded the Zara retail chain with her then-husband Amancio Ortega Gaona. The company grew to become the world's largest fashion retailer.
Early life and education
Rosalia Mera was born in A Coruña, Galiza, Spain in 1944. She dropped out of school at age eleven to work as a sales assistant in a clothing shop.
Mera began designing gowns and lingerie in her home with her then-husband, Amancio Ortega Gaona. The couple opened the first Zara store in 1975 in A Coruña. Eventually the couple parlayed their work into a multi-billion dollar enterprise. Zara's success was in part due to its strategy of imitating popular fashions and quickly making them for sale at inexpensive prices.
Ten years after the opeining of the first Zara store, Inditex was established as a holding company for the couple's businesses. Inditex now comprises multiple fashion companies, of which Zara is the flagship. The company also owns the retailers Bershka, Masssimo Dutti, Oysho, Pull & Bear, Stradivarius, Uterque and Zara Home. Inditex now has over 6000 stores in over 86 countries and over 120,000 employees. Despite her 1986 divorce from Ortega, Mera retained a 7% stake in the company.
Mera also owned interests in a company which made fingerprinting identification kits for newborns and another company, Zeltia, which carries out research into cancer fighting compounds of both synthetic and natural origin and particularly those bioactive compounds originating in the ocean.
According to the 2013 Forbes billionaire list, Mera was the world's wealthiest self-made female entrepreneur, with a net worth of over $6 billion. She was the second-wealthiest person from Spain, second only to her ex-husband.
Political and philanthropic activities
Mera opposed conservative Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy's plans to make Spain's abortion laws more restrictive. She also opposed austerity cutbacks to Spain's national healthcare and education programes.
Mera established the Paideia Foundation which works with groups in risk of social exclusion.
Mera married Amancio Ortega Gaona in 1966. She had a son, Marcos, who was born mentally disabled. The couple also had a daughter, Sandra.
On 14 August 2013, Mera was admitted to a hospital in Menorca in an ‘irreversible situation’ after suffering a stroke. The family had been on holiday in Menorca. Mera died on 15 August 2013 in A Coruña. She had been transferred by plane to the port city and then by ambulance to the Hospital San Rafael de A Coruña where she later died of complications. Inditex confirmed Mera's death on 16 August 2013, stating "The group wishes to send its sincere condolences to her loved ones and friends at this extremely difficult time, after the loss of a person who contributed so much to the origins and development of the company." She was buried in the cemetery of the church of Santa Eulalia of Liáns, in Oleiros(A Coruña).
- ^ a b c d e f Kroll, Luisa. "The Rarer Sex: The Self-Made Women Billionaires Of 2013". Forbes. Retrieved 10 March 2013.
- ^ a b c d e f "Zara co-founder Rosalia Mera dies aged 69". BBC News. 16 August 2013. Retrieved 16 August 2013.
- ^ "Rosalia Mera, World's Richest Self-Made Woman, Dies At 69". Forbes. 16 August 2013. Retrieved 16 August 2013.
- ^ a b c d "Rosalia Mera". Daily Telegraph.
- ^ a b c d e Baigorri, Manuel (16 August 2013). "Rosalia Mera, Who Was Spain’s Richest Woman, Dies at 69". Bloomberg. Retrieved 16 August 2013.
- ^ a b c d "Rosalia Mera, World's Wealthiest Self-Made Woman, Dies At 69". Huffington Post. Retrieved 16 August 2013.
- ^ "UPDATE 1-Co-founder of Zara-owner Inditex dies in hospital-report". Reuters. Retrieved 16 August 2013.
- ^ Zeltia website
- ^ EC accreditation for the foundation
- ^ Rosalía Mera, has been admitted to hospital in Menorca in an ‘irreversible situation’ after suffering a stroke (15 August 2013). Retrieved 16 August 2013
- ^ Muere Rosalía Mera, cofundadora de Inditex (16 August 2013). Retrieved 16 August 2013. (Spanish)
- ^ Conti, Samantha (16 August 2013). "Rosalia Mera, Cofounder of Inditex, Dies". WWD. Retrieved 16 August 2013.
- ^ 
Interview with Rosalia Mera
Video interview with Rosalia Mera, Spain.
Dolor y emoción en el entierro de Rosalía Mera
Oleiros (A Coruña), 17 ago (EFE).- (Imagen Jorge Piñeiro) La presidenta de la Fundación Paideia, Rosalía Mera, fallecida el jueves tras un derrame cerebral, ...
La mujer más rica de España arremete contra los recortes del Gobierno (La Sexta)
Rosalía Mera, la mujer que fundó Zara, apuesta por la sanidad y la educación PÚBLICAS. Recortar en educación es "hacernos un flaquísimo favor". Críticas a la...
2 rosalia mera dep ccoo twitter ugt andalucia
Historical Day : Rosalía Mera Died August 15, 2013
This name uses Spanish naming customs; the first or paternal family name is Mera and the second or maternal family name is Goyenechea. Rosalía Mera Goyeneche...
Muere a los 69 años Rosalía Mera, la mujer más rica de España
Síguenos en twitter @TFnoticias y en facebook.com/tfnoticiasonline Suscribete a la actualidad y comenta, queremos conocer tu opinión ©TFnoticias 2008-2013 TO...
World's Wealthiest Self-Made Woman - Rosalia Mera, (owner of Zara), Dies
http://www.africtoday.com Rosalia Mera, a seamstress who co-founded a clothing store in northwestern Spain that grew into Zara, one of the world's largest re...
Fallece Rosalía Mera, la "madre" del imperio Inditex
Fallece Rosalía Mera. La empresaria gallega, que fundó el imperio textil Inditex junto a su ex... Euronews, el canal de noticias mas visto en Europa. Abónese...
Reportaje Fundación Paideia - Mans ORPNews.tv
Reportaje realizado por ORPNews.tv en 2012 sobre la Fundación Paideia Galiza y el Centro de Iniciativas Empresariales MANS. Entrevista a Rosalía Mera, presid...
ROSALIA MERA co-fundadora INDITEX y Zara/ Alfiler de Oro
EN BOGA Grupo de Comunicación www.enboga.net Entrega Alfiler de Oro -Empresarias Mujer Siglo XXI.
Wed, 05 Mar 2014 10:22:30 -0800
Rosalia Mera began producing a line of clothing at home; she eventually built international retailer Zara. Ray Dolby pioneered noise cancelling audio filtration technology that would become so ubiquitous it would eventually be referred to simply as ...
Thu, 06 Mar 2014 16:56:15 -0800
4 Sandra Ortega Mera: The daughter of Inditex clothing retailer Amancio Ortega has inherited the fortune of her late mother, Zara co-founder Rosalia Mera. A trained psychologist, Ortega Mera is not active within Inditex. 5 Sheryl Sandberg: The ...
Mon, 03 Mar 2014 03:37:30 -0800
Newcomers that came to their fortunes through an inheritance include Sandra Mera Ortega, daughter of the late billionaire Rosalia Mera. Mera, along with then husband and now third-richest person in the world, founded clothing giant Inditex (best known ...
Mon, 03 Mar 2014 05:52:30 -0800
One of the women who is new on the list is Sandra Mera Ortega, daughter of the late billionaire Rosalia Mera, who had founded Inditex, best known for the clothing store chain Zara. Mera is divorced from Amancio Ortega, third on the list. First ...
Tue, 25 Feb 2014 03:26:15 -0800
Four billionaires from last year's Hurun Global Rich List died last year: Rosalia Mera, Patrick Ricard, Barbara Piasecka Johnson and Otto Beisheim. Rosalia Mera, ex-wife of Amancio Ortega and co-founder of Zara, died in August 2013, leaving US$6.1bn ...
El Periódico de Catalunya
El Periódico de Catalunya
Sun, 09 Mar 2014 05:00:00 -0700
Sandra es Sandra Ortega Mera primogénita del matrimonio entre los fundadores del imperio Inditex -Amancio Ortega y Rosalía Mera- y la frase es de Pancho Casal, productor audiovisual que ha tratado a lo largo de años con madre e hija. «Discre.
El Periódico de Catalunya
El Periódico de Catalunya
Sun, 09 Mar 2014 05:11:15 -0700
La Sandra és Sandra Ortega Mera, primogènita del matrimoni entre els fundadors de l'imperi Inditex -Amancio Ortega i Rosalía Mera- i la frase és de Pancho Casal, productor audiovisual que ha tractat al llarg d'anys amb mare i filla. &l... Consulta aquest ...
Mon, 03 Mar 2014 09:15:00 -0800
La revista Forbes publica su famosa lista de 'Los más ricos del mundo' y este año llega con una sorpresa: tras el fallecimiento el pasado mes de agosto de Rosalía Mera, su hija Sandra Ortega pasa a ser la española que más alto se sitúa en la tabla con ...
Oops, we seem to be having trouble contacting Twitter
You can talk about Rosalía Mera with people all over the world in our discussions.